Photo Courtesy of Montclair State University

Montclair State Swimming & Diving end regular season, sweep rivals

Tuesday night, on the campus of Montclair State University, in Montclair, N.J. the last swimming and diving meet of the regular season took place between the Montclair State Red Hawks and their rivals, William Paterson University Pioneers.

The meet ended in a decisive victory for the Red Hawks, who not only dominated all events but broke a school record.

The third race of the meet was the 1,650 Freestyle, the longest race that took place on Tuesday night. As it turned out, the swimmers competing on their home campus had the upper hand from the get-go, and that lead only stretched as the signs showing the lap number grew. It was sophomore Julie Tiedemann who would break a Panzer Pool record by besting former Red Hawk Sydney Stein's time with her 18:26:95.

However, the Red Hawk swimmers were not finished dominating this meet. Not long after Tiedemann found glory in the longest race of the night, four lady swimmers achieved their own in the 200 freestyle. Again, the crew that jumped off the blocks for Montclair took home the prize. All three MSU divers would finish in close succession, beginning with Rourke Peralta, a freshman who finished first with a 2:03:42, followed by Kate Cipoletti (2:04:49), and Ava Mafucci (2:05:37)

At that point, Montclair State opened a big lead in the meet and never looked back. On the men's side of the action, one of the top races to watch was the 200-team medley. In the first leg, Ryan Kappes, Spenser Dubois, Luke Miglin and John Englert came in first place behind a 1:45:83 time. Coming right behind them in second were their classmates on a different relay team, Anthony Ferraro, Jon Morris, Jared Gaynor and Brandon Do who raced 1:47:35. Lastly, there was Matt Deitlinger, Dennis Delargy, Dan Bartsevich and Chris Muhleisen who ranked third. 

After about eight different swimming events, tired legs climbed out of the pool at the small but brightly lit Panzer natatorium, walked past the fans and media and over to their seats for some rest. Many walked outside to relieve themselves of the sweltering humidity indoors.

Red Hawks Finish Strong

Later on, Red Hawk sophomore Brandon Do swung the tide more into Montclair's favor by earning a first-place finish in the 400-meter individual medley with a 4:30:74 time. 

Moving on to the diving portion of this rivalry meet, Audrey Hitchens (1:44.9) and Emma Bowers (1:41.5) claimed first and second place in the one-meter dive. As for the "100- Fly", the Red Hawk divers seemed to be fencing for first place, as Gianna Antonelli was 45 seconds behind Sarah Bent. The latter from Haddonfield, Camden County came in first ahead of her teammate.

Another race that Montclair State's female swimmers dominated was the 100-meter freestyle. This race consists of just two full laps (to the far end of the pool and back) and is a real test of power. Like the 200-meter freestyle, the Red Hawks jetted past their adversaries from Paterson and finished first-third. 

What added significance and luster to this victory for the Montclair State Red Hawks was undeniably their second freshman taking first place in a race at this meet. This time it was Catti Geyer from Ohio, who finished with a 56:99 in the 200-meter freestyle while her teammates, junior Abby Brock and sophomore Sophie Shopovick came in second and third. 

This concluded a dominant display for the Red Hawks who swept 'Willy P' in their last meet of the 2022-23 season. The MSU men won 120-71, while the women dominated their opponents from William Paterson, 153-58.

Hearing from the Swimmers and Divers

Many a Red Hawk swimmer or diver succeeded last night but none more than Julie Tiedemann. For the sophomore from New York state, breaking the record in the grueling 1,650-meter freestyle is a testament to her work ethic and that of the coaching staff.

We really trusted our coaches, who have really helped us [earn] our best times. A lot of breaking the record has to do with the way we've been swimming the last few weeks. That's probably how I found the motivation that I could beat the record because of how I've been doing lately.

Tiedemann then discussed the biggest swim meet of the year, the Metro Championships a playoff-like end-of-year competition which is the last meet Montclair State will compete in this season.

Team spirit has a lot of control over how we swim. This meet wasn't that high energy but we all came in after having kind of a tough practice, we were ready to just swim our best, do whatever we could to [win the meet]. Its beneficial when your teammates to have your back.

Anthony Paradiso
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