Records Fall as Men's and Women's Swimming & Diving Both Finish 2nd in GNAC Championships

Records Fall as Men's and Women's Swimming & Diving Both Finish 2nd in GNAC Championships

BOSTON, Mass. - The Regis (Mass.) men's and women's swimming & diving teams combined to set six Great Northeast Athletic Conference records and three school records in the second day of the GNAC Championships, where both teams finished in second on Sunday afternoon at Simmons College.

The women's team finished only behind the host Sharks, winning their 13th consecutive conference title with 1,124 points, besting the Pride's 541. The men recorded 214 points on the weekend, falling short to Norwich University, who finished with 369.

On the men's side, Day Two belonged to Pride seniors Cassidy Bastianelli (Newton, Mass.) and Kiet Luong (Malden, Mass.). Bastianelli broke the program and GNAC records by nearly 30 seconds with his performance in the 1,000 yard freestyle, recording a time of 9:58.49. His 500 yard split in the same event also set a GNAC record. Later in the afternoon, Bastianelli set another GNAC record with a time of 47.75 to claim the title in the 100 yard freestyle. Luong set a pair of GNAC records himself, opening with both school and GNAC records in the 400 yard individual medley. Luong originally broke the record in the preliminary round with a time of 4:32.74, before preceding to shatter his own record in the finals with a time of 4:22.08. The senior also set a GNAC record 50 yard backstroke, besting his own mark from a year ago with a time of 24.20.

The Pride men's team started off the second day with a win in the 4x200 yard medley relay, with the team of Luong, Bastianelli, Bryan Johnson (Sudbury, Mass.) and Nick Rainville (Reading, Mass.) winning the race with a time of 1:39.86. A number of Pride swimmers reached the finals in their events on the second day of competition as well. Junior Michael Bruno (Winthrop, Mass.) joined Bastianelli in the 1,000 yard freestyle, where he finished in eighth place. Johnson and sophomore Joshua Unas (Santa Clarita, Calif.) finished second and third respectively in the finals of the 50 yard breaststroke. In the 100 yard freestyle, Bastianelli and Rainville claimed the top two spots in the finals, with senior captain Rob Ekberg (Northbridge, Mass.) finishing in seventh. Unas came in third for the second time of the afternoon in the finals of the 200 yard butterfly, and was part of the relay team that finished third in the finals of the 800 yard freestyle relay, along with Paul Brennan (Rumford, Conn.), Bruno and Ekberg.

For the women, freshman Gloria Sutton (Suffield, Conn.) set a 21-year-old school record in the 1000 yard freestyle. Her time of 11:18.97 was good for second place in the finals of the race. Sophomore Amanda Graf (Newton, Mass.) had a record-setting performance of her own on Sunday afternoon, as she set the new GNAC best in the 100 yard backstroke, winning the race with a time of 1:00.67.

In the day's opening event, the Pride's 200 yard medley relay team of Sarah Leonard (Brockton, Mass.), Ashlyn DeRoche (North Reading, Mass.), Jessica Zernitsky (Newton, Mass.) and Katherine Mariano (Newton, Mass.) fell just short of topping the podium, as it finished in second place with a time of 1:58.38. Freshman Ryan Moran (Arlington, Mass.) reached the finals along with record-setter Sutton in the 1000 yard freestyle, while Graf, Leonard and Sutton all reached the finals in 100 yard backstroke. Zernitsky and DeRoche reached the finals in the 100 yard freestyle, finishing fifth and seventh respectively. Mariano finished fourth in the 400 yard individual medley finals, where she recorded a time of 5:18.62. Leonard was the top finisher in the finals of the 50 yard backstroke with a time of 28.26, and was followed closely by her teammate and third place finisher Graf, with a time of 29.02. Sutton, Graf, Mariano and Moran finished off the championships with a third place finish in the 800 yard freestyle relay. The quartet completed the race in 8:55.49.

"We had an amazing championships. Breaking the school records were awesome especially done mid season which does not happen often, along with all the GNAC records and all our finalists," said Pride head coach James Sweeney. "It was great to see so many put in best in-season and lifetime best times. Finishing this semester on such a great note with little rest makes me very excited for the rest of our season."

The Pride will be off for the remainder of 2016, but will return to the pool on Saturday, Jan. 14 for a tri-meet at Colby-Sawyer College with the host Chargers and Simmons College.