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Men's swimming and diving trumps Middlebury

LEWISTON, Maine -- The Bates men's swimming and diving team defeated NESCAC rival Middlebury in a dual meet for the first time in at least 20 years on Sunday, scoring a 152-142 head-to-head win marked in part by junior captain Travis Jones' record-setting diving.

The Bates women also performed well in a 154-134 head-to-head loss against the perennial powerhouse Panthers.

Jones (Ithaca, N.Y.) made his first-ever national cut by scoring 312.00 points on six dives in the 3-meter diving competition, breaking the former pool record of 304.80 set by seven-time All-America Andrew Hastings '02 in 2002. Jones won the 3-meter and the 1-meter diving, in which he scored 267.75 points.

First-year Matthew Gagne (Wilmette, Ill.) also had a tremendous day at Tarbell Pool. Gagne won the 200 fly in 1:59.18, as well as the 100 fy in 52.83 and the 200 individual medley in 2:00.79.

Other event winners for the Bates men included:

  • Senior captain Tom Boniface (Youngstown, Ohio) won the 200 free in 1:46.35.
  • Senior Dan Aupi (Branford, Conn.) won the 50 free in 22.17
  • First-year Andrew Briggs (York, Maine) won the 200 breaststroke in 2:18.53.
  • First-year Alex Smachlo (Rexford, N.Y.) won the 500 free in 4:57.96.
  • Bates also swam under the former pool record in the 400 free relay, but the Bobcats' 3:14.20 time was edged by Middlebury's 3:14.07. Swimming the race for Bates were Aupi, senior Nathaniel Depew (Hudson, Ohio), Gagne and Boniface. The former pool record of 3:14.77 was set by Bates' Aupi, Depew, Boniface and Ned Scott '12 on Jan. 23, 2010.

"We had tremendous victories from our freshman and senior class today," said Bates head coach Peter Casares. "I couldn't have been more impressive with the heart the team showed."

Bates head coach Peter Casares gives captain Kara Leasure '12 a hug after the women's 1,650-yard freestyle race against Middlebury.

Sophomore Emilie Geissinger (Bismarck, N.D.) had an outstanding meet for the Bates women's team, including a win in the 100 free, with a time of 55.55 seconds. She also finished second by .14 seconds in the 200 free at 1:58.27 and was the runner-up in the 50 free by .21 seconds, in a time of 25.38. "She is well on her way to a breakthrough season," commented Casares.

First-year Sarah Bouchard (Annapolis, Md.) was the Bobcats' other event winner, winning the mile freestyle race in 18:12.73, less than two seconds ahead of senior captain Kara Leasure's (Los Alamos, N.M.) time of 18:14.31.

"The women swam terrific, too," said Casares. "Bates showed that we are very tough -- and deeper than ever. Middlebury is clearly more talented and we are hoping our hard work helps us get even closer come NESCACs."

Bates next competes in a dual meet at Bowdoin on Jan. 20 at 7pm.

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