YORK, PA - The York College men’s swim team (1-1,1-1 CAC) began the 2009 season with a tri-meet split against a pair of Capital Athletic Conference foes in visiting Hood College (0-3, 0-2 CAC) and the University of Mary Washington (4-1, 3-0 CAC) Friday evening in York. The Spartans defeated Hood by a margin of 222-27, but fell to the Eagles by a tally of 190.50- 71.50.
The Green and White opened the 2009 campaign with the 200 yard medley relay. The Spartans relay featuring the junior combination of Ben Hilt (Mt. Joy, Pa./ Hempfield), and Steve Tobin (Estell Manor, N.J./ Holy Spirit) kept the race close with UMW through the breaststroke leg of the relay. That is when senior Clark Arnold (York, Pa./ Northeastern) and sophomore Jack Gottschalk (Forest Hill, Md./ Fallston) made the race interesting pulling within inches of the opposing team before finishing a very close second with a time of 1:40.12.
After the opening event, the Spartans battled on when junior Steve Yeager (Sinking Spring, Pa./ Wilson) held pace with the Eagles trio of Jack McHugh, Chris Shifflett, and Andrew Garofolo through the first half of the 1000 yard freestyle. Yeager went on to a fourth place finish and a time of 5:10.07.
Coming off a very successful freshman campaign, Gottschalk entered the pool just where he left off. The Spartan sophomore led the 200 freestyle through 70 yards with a half body length lead over his nearest competitor. UMW’s Brad Dunn took over however, with a powerful flip turn at the 100 yard mark, pulling away for the victory. Gottschalk settled for a third place finished with a time off 1:51.75.
The Eagles continued to give the Spartans all they could handle with a sweep of the 100 yard backstroke, and a one-two finish in the 100 yard breaststroke. Preventing the breaststroke sweep, Spartan freshman Steve Mercer (Rockville, Md./ The Heights School) swam a 1:03.46 to capture a third place finish.
Hilt resurfaced in the 50 yard sprint freestyle event to bring home a tie for second with a strong back end of the 50. The Spartan junior hit the wall with a time of 22.73.
Senior Michael Murphy (Farmingdale, N.J./ Colts Neck) swam in his first 100 yard freestyle since bringing home the CAC title in the event at last years conference championships. After the first 50 yards of the race Murphy found himself battling out a close second and finished the event in the same position with a time of 49.77, trailing only UMW’s Justin Anderson (49.17).
The 200 yard breaststroke provided the Green and White with their lone event win of the tri-meet. Yeager touched the wall at 2:18.74 to not only give York the victory but also establish a new pool record in the event. Sophomore Jamie Hicks (Kingsville, Md./ Fallston) touched the wall with a time of 2:22.76 to take third in the event. Arnold joined back into the scoring action with a third place finish in the 100 yard butterfly in a time of 55.56.
While visiting the York College Natatorium the Eagles managed to also secure two pool records. The first was a time of 4:53.07 recorded by UMW’s Nick Eckhoff in the 500 freestyle, the second record was set by UMW’s Stephen Clendenin with a tie of 2:01.77 in the 200 yard individual medley. The Eagles finished the night by besting the Spartans in the 400 yard freestyle relay with a time of 3:18.16.
The Spartans return to action tomorrow against CAC opponent Marymount as the Green and White will look to build on last season’s 159-74 victory. York visits the Saints in Arlington, Va. on Saturday, November 7, with meet action kicking off at 2:00 p.m.
Jamie Hicks photo courtesy of Zach Clabaugh (www.sharpedgephoto.smugmug.com)
Game story written by Garrett Wampler - York College sports information student intern