In the recent tri-meet held on Jan. 17 at the Gerald Ratner Athletic Center on the University of Chicago campus, both the men’s and women’s swim team split victories. The men defeated Olivet Nazarene 193-64 but fell to University of Chicago 189-98. The women took down Olivet 154-127 but came up short to Chicago 228-64. This served as the Flyers’ second meet of the new year.
The women held out for a total of 14 top five finishes. Leading the way was freshman Cetta Senese, who was runner up in the 100 yard breaststroke with a time of 1:11.42, and third in the 200 yard breaststroke clocking in 2:31.65. Additionally, Senese contributed to two top three finishes in both the 200 medley and freestyle relays.
Also dominating, was senior Eboni McCray who placed first in the 100 yard butterfly with a 59.74, as well as in the 50 yard freestyle, bringing it home in a 24.49. McCray was barely out touched in the 100 yard freestyle to finish second with a 54.11.
On the men’s side, Junior Ruben van Leeuwen took first in the 200 yard butterfly with 1:52.14, while coming second in the 100 yard freestyle (47.44) and the 100 yard butterfly (50.69). Dominant sprinter, senior Guillaume Bolivard, claimed the victory in the 100 yard freestyle clocking in 47.42, while touching the wall second in the 50 yard freestyle with 21.25 and fourth in the 100 yard backstroke with 53.62.
Swedish native Filip Bjorkholm won the 500 yard freestyle in 4:43.17, followed by a second place finish in the 200 yard butterfly with 1:55.06. For his third individual event of the night, Bjorkholm placed sixth in the 200 yard individual medley clocking in 2:00.87, helping to contribute to the victory over Olivet.
Pulling away from the crowd was sophomore Rhys Taylor. Originally from Nottingham, England, Taylor predominantly swims distance freestyle and breaststroke. His talents came through touching first in both the 100 yard breaststroke with a time of 58.08 and 1000 yard freestyle with 9:33.29, along with a fourth place in the 200 yard breaststroke going 2:10.93.
Clocking in at an impressive time of 9:33.29, Rhys was just one second away from the NCAA “B” qualifying time in the 1000 yard freestyle, which is a very uncommon standard to reach during an in-season meet. Although surprised with such a strong performance, Taylor is confident moving forward in the season.
Chiming in on Rhys’s performance was graduate assistant coach, Diana Tobo. “Rhys is a very talented swimmer that listens and learns from his mistakes,” said Tobo. Being one of the main coaches of the distance group, Tobo is excited to see what the group will accomplish with championship season being right around the corner. “I have no doubts that they will have a great performance at conference,” said Tobo.
The Flyers’ next meet will be the Great Lakes Valley Conference (GLVC) Championship held in Crawfordsville, Ind., on February 12-15.