BALTIMORE – Coming off of last week's double win over Old Dominion at home, the UMBC swimming and diving team gets right back to competition as the Retrievers make the short trip to Loyola on Saturday. The Retrievers and Greyhounds will kick-off their cross-town meet at 1:00 p.m. at the Mangione Pool.
The win over the Monarchs pushed the men's team's record to a perfect 5-0 mark while the women improved to 4-2 on the season. Both the men and women defeated Loyola last year when the Greyhounds came to the UMBC Aquatic Complex on Alumni/Senior Day.
Fifteen different Retrievers have contributed at least one dual meet win for the undefeated men's team, led by junior Mohamed Hussein (Cairo, Egypt/Victory College) who has claimed 14 event wins. Hussein is unbeaten in the 200 IM this season and holds the fastest time in the America East (1:50.83) which he set while winning gold at the Patriot Invitational. In addition, the Retrievers have won nine of the ten relays events this season, dropping their first, the 200 medley relay, to ODU last week.
Behind Hussein, senior Pierre De Waal (Pretoria, South Africa/Tuks Sports) leads a group of seven other swimmers whom have earned multiple victories. De Waal won both the 200 fly and 500 free last week against Old Dominion to bring his 2012-13 haul to nine wins. Juniors Evan Carey (Grand Island, N.Y./Grand Island) and Johan Rohtla (Tallinn, Estonia/Tallinn Secondary Science), as well as sophomore Lauri Kaei (Harjumaa, Esstonia/Tallinn Secondary Science) and freshman Leo Endres (Bamberg, Germany/Kaiser Heinrich Gymnasium) have each won four or more events.
On the boards, two Retrievers have qualified for the NCAA Zones meet to be held in March. Senior Andrew Eckhoff (Chelmsford, Mass./Chelmsford) leads UMBC and the America East with the highest scores in both the 1-meter and 3-competitions. The senior captain scored a season-best 338.25 in a 1-meter event in Coral Springs, Fla. over winter break and then posted a score of 337.95 last week against ODU. Sophomore Ryan Green (Ellicott City, Md./Centennial) also qualified for the regional meet by scoring 318.075 points during the 1-meter event in Florida.
The women's success has also come as a result of a team effort as 13 Retrievers have won an event this season. Like the men, the women have also had success in the relays, staking claim to eight of the ten events this season.
Senior Jennifer Kotonias (Burtonsville, Md./Academy of Holy Cross) and junior Erika Ronning (Western Springs, Ill./Lyons Township) have each won six events this season to pace the Retrievers. Kotonias won the 200 IM last week against the Lady Monarchs while Ronning took both the 50 and 100-yd. free events.
Kotonias' classmate Claire Barron (Lowestoft, England/Benjamin Britten/New Orleans) shined for UMBC last week sweeping the breaststroke events and helping the Retrievers sweep the relays en route to earning America East Female Swimmer of the Week honors. Barron has won four events this season while helping to claim six relays, including all four 200 medley wins.
The Retrievers have a dual threat on the diving boards this season as sophomore Katie Bean (Mechanicsville, Va./Atlee) and freshman Corinna Darelius (Rye, N.Y./Rye) have swept the two diving competitions in three of the meets this season. Also, both divers have qualified for the NCAA Zones meet.