The Boston University men’s swimming and diving team has gotten used to success, a trend that continued last weekend against Tufts University.
The undefeated Terriers routed the Jumbos by a score of 176-122, bringing their season record to 8-0.
BU coach Bill Smyth attributed the team’s eighth straight win to the challenging beginning of the Terriers’ season.
‘[The University of Massachusetts-Amherst] and Binghamton [University] are possibly two of our toughest meets of the season, and it’s how we begin our season,’ Smyth said. ‘When you begin with extremely tough competition right away, it tends to prepare your team very well for the dual meet season to come.’
Smyth also credited the Terriers’ poise to their training during the offseason.
‘I think a big key to our success in dual meets was the individual commitment to preparation that the team made over the summer months,’ Smyth said.
The Terriers, particularly the underclassmen, were more than prepared for the Jumbos, who only placed first three times in the 16 events.
Freshman Jack Hill won the 50-yard freestyle with a time of 22.00 seconds and the 100-yard free with a time of 47.06. He also helped win the 200-yard medley relay, swimming his freestyle split in 21.69.
Alongside Hill in the 200-yard medley was sophomore Kyle Ernst, who swam the backstroke split in 25.45. Ernst also won the 200-yard breaststroke in 2 minutes, 11.25 seconds and the 200 IM in 1:59.65.
Sophomore Bryon Kallert also added to the Terriers’ young talent with his contribution in the 200-yard medley relay. Kallert also won the 100-yard backstroke with a time of 53.88 and the 200-yard back with a time of 1:56.34.
Smyth explained that the freshmen and sophomores’ results have earned them some of the team’s most important spots.
‘We have one senior swimmer, four junior swimmers, nine sophomores and eight freshmen,’ Smyth said. ‘Our strength is in our youth.’ Our leadership is in our older athletes. Our entire team trains at a highly committed level, but because our numbers are skewed towards the young side, you tend to see them step up often.’
Junior Arik Seiler was one of the few upperclassmen to place first, winning the 200-yard freestyle with a time of 1:44.07.
Even with such a variety of age, the team’s atmosphere is generally pleasant, and the Terriers’ success is proof of that.
‘We put a lot of thought and work into getting great team chemistry,’ Smyth said. ‘It’s always on our minds.’ With great team chemistry, individuals tend to be happy, and when you’re happy, you tend to train at a very high level.”
BU’s diving team earned first place in its portion of the meet, which took place Friday. Sophomore Tanner Knorr, who recently won the America East Diver of the Week award, led the pack with 323.48 points on the 1-meter board. BU senior Alex Caesar took third place with 249.53 points.
Knorr and Caesar placed second and third, respectively, in the 3-meter dive. Knorr trailed the winner by less than six points, scoring 261.98. Caesar was not far behind with 244.05.
The Terriers’ next matchup will be against cross-town rival Boston College on Feb. 4, and Smyth is already preparing his team for the arduous away meet.
‘BC is our archrival, and we take this coming dual meet with the highest level of focus and determination,’ Smyth said. ‘We are swimming in their pool, which is to their advantage, and we have to overcome that.’ They’re a very deep team and they have almost twice as many swimmers as we do.
‘Our advantage is that you can only race four of your athletes at a time, and I’m confident that our team will be ready.’