Men’s Swimming: Wildcats fall just short in season opener


Daily file photo by Daniel Tian

Nick Peterson dives into the pool. The senior and the Wildcats lost their opener to Eastern Michigan.

Lexie Modeas, Reporter

Swimming and Diving

Northwestern, even equipped with an arsenal of eight new swimmers, could not edge Eastern Michigan in Wednesday’s dual meet.

The Wildcats traveled to Ypsilanti, Michigan, on Wednesday afternoon to kick off their 2017-18 season, losing to the Eagles by a mere 12 points, with a final score of 153-141. Though NU failed to bring home a victory, it secured eight first-place finishes.

Without any Cats divers at the meet, Eastern Michigan gained a decisive 32 points in the one-meter and three-meter diving events.

Eight freshmen joined the program this season, and proved themselves valuable at Wednesday’s meet. Keegan Bundy began his NU career on a strong note, finishing second in the 100-yard freestyle and third in the 50-yard free.

Freshman swimmer Liam Gately had perhaps the most impressive debut of the newcomers. He won the 200-yard free with a time of 1:40.10, and soon after achieved another victory in the 500-yard free, clocking in at 4:36.75. On the day, Gately secured 18 points for the Cats.

Before the meet, junior Will Hofstadter said distance swimming would be an advantage for NU. His forecast proved true against Eastern Michigan.

Freshman swimmer DJ Hwang displayed his talents with a time of 9:29.17 and a first-place finish in the 1,000-yard free. Freshman Jeffrey Durmer and senior Jonathan Blansfield followed suit, securing second- and third-place finishes in the event, respectively. Altogether, the sweep gave the Cats 16 points.

Senior Alex Snarski started his final season off strong, with a first-place finish in the 50-yard free and a time of 21.35. Snarski also swam the second leg of NU’s winning 200-yard free relay team.

Hofstadter impressed in the 100- and 200-yard breaststroke. In both events, the junior finished first with the competition close behind.

Last year, Hofstadter earned eighth place in the 100-yard breaststroke at the Big Ten Championships, along with a NCAA ‘B’ qualifying time.

The junior will look to build on his early success and help the team bounce back when No. 7 Georgia visits the Norris Aquatics Center on Oct. 20.

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