WILLIAMSTOWN, MASS. - The Williams College swim and dive team topped the NESCAC podium tonight, winning their 18th NESCAC championship out of the 20 that have beenheld. The night was not only highlighted by the win, but also by individual awards presented at the end of the session.
The first swim of the night was the 1650. Senior Andrew Trunsky, after getting slightly behind on the start of the race, plowed through the back half and placed second overall in a 15:38.87. Other Ephs competed in the mile, with Jackson Karofsky '21 placing fifth overall in a 15:53.49, Cole Mason '23 placing in his first top eight in a 16:06.27, and Will Burford '20 placed tenth in a 16:23.91 -- his final collegiate race.
The next individual event was the 200 backstroke. Sophomore backstroke boys, Nick Whitcomb, Paul Leclerc, and Timmy Page held down the fort for the Ephs in the championship final. Page, in his second championship final of the meet, placed seventh overall in a 1:51.83, with Leclerc finishing fifth place in a 1:50.70. Nick Whitcomb, after winning the 50 and 100 backstroke, swam a very well split race and placed third in a best time of 1:49.15.
The 100 freestyle was up next, with Aaron Stanton '22 winning the consolation final in a best time of 45.72. His finals swim was almost a second faster than his morning, with his quick front half setting himself up for his great swim. In the championship final and his first individual 100 free of his NESCAC championship career, Jamie Lovette '21 swam right off his speedy time from the morning and went a 44.95. He placed third overall.
Once again, the breaststroke events featured many Ephs. In the pre-consolation final, Sam Gollob '22 swam his third 200 breaststroke of the day. The Eph initially tied for 24th place after the prelims session, requiring him to race in a swim-off later in the session. Gollob won the swim off, and ended up placing 19th in a time of 2:09.03. in the consolation final, Alex Bank '20 competed in his final race as a swimmer, placing fifteenth in a 2:08.47. Freshman Jack Marquardt also partook in the race, going 2:06.68 and placing tenth overall, out touching the competition by .14 seconds. Finally, in the championship final, the Ephs placed three in the top five. Breaststroke sprinter Liam Sullivan '23 placed fifth for the Ephs, swimming slightly off his best time from the morning in a 2:04.39, with his race highlighted by his quick first 100. In fourth place, and in his last collegiate swim, Clayton Morikawa '20 swam a 2:04.01, a best time for the senior. Finally, coming in first place was freshman Jacob Grover. In the morning, Grover plowed down the pool, meet, and NESAC record, and tonight he dropped those times even further. In an incredibly well split and well swum race, Grover won his second NESCAC title of the weekend in a time of 1:58.07.
In the final individual event of the meet, the 200 butterfly, the Ephs placed four in the top five, with each class represented. To start, freshmen Ev Nichol lowered his best time from the morning to go a 1:51.51, placing fifth. Next up was sophomore Sean Tan, whose quick first 100 set himself up for his finishing place of third overall in a 1:51.44, outtouching the competition by .03. Finally, in a brawl for first and second place were junior David Pearcy and senior Lucca Delcompare, with Delcompare having broken the pool record in the morning. While Pearcy had a great third 50, the senior ultimately ousted the junior, with Delcompare snatching another 200 butterfly title, going a 1:48.60. Pearcy placed second in a 1:48.84.
In the 3-meter diving competition, Kobe Tray '23 had an incredible finals performance, moving up from his third place seed to placing second overall. He destroyed his back twister (5235d), scoring multiple sevens. Tray will continue his season next weekend to compete at Regionals.
The final event of the session was the 400 freestyle relay. The Eph relay of sprinters, featuring distance swimmer Jackson Karofsky, took third place overall. David Pearcy started the ephs off with a strong spit of 45.91, handing the lane off to classmate Karofsky. Karofsky, despite competing in the mile earlier in the session, whipped out a quick split of a 46.60, with Aaron Stanton diving in next. Stanton went out blazing fast, swimming a split of 44.43, which was 1.3 seconds faster than his best time that he swam earlier in the session. Finally, freestyler Jamie Lovette entered the water. Lovette also split 1.3 seconds faster than his individual and went a 43.65, the second fastest split of the heat. The Ephs finished in a time of 3:00.59.
After the conclusion of the competition section of the meet, there were individual awards presented. The first award, the Rookie of the Year, went to Jacob Grover, who won the 200 Individual Medley, placed second in the 100 breaststroke, and won the 200 breaststroke in a new NESCAC record. While Grover was excited for this recognition, he did not anticipate that he would also win NESCAC Swimmer of the year. His previously mentioned accolades won him this additional recognition, and Grover is the first swimmer to be named Rookie of the Year and Swimmer of the Year. Grover is the 15th Williams swimmer to be named the NESCAC Swimmer of the Year and is the fourth Rookie of the Year honoree for the Ephs.
The Ephs also won the NESCAC 4-Year High Point Swimmer Award in the form of Andrew Trunsky. Trunsky totaled 341 points during his four-year career at the NESCAC Championships and is the 13th Eph to earn the honor, with a Williams swimmer winning the award five of the last six years. Additionally, classmate Lucca Delcompare placed third overall for the class of 2020.
Finally, head coach Steve Kuster won the NESCAC Swimming Coach of the Year, for the second year in a row and the eighth time in his incredible 21-year career at Williams. On the weekend and the NESCAC title, Kuster says, "I'm very proud of the entire team. It wasn't a perfect meet, but we have an outstanding team who competed exceptionally well together and for each other this weekend."
The Ephs continue their season next weekend with diving regionals, in which Kobe Tray will be representing the college.