Oct. 5, 2017
THE FLATS – Georgia Tech swimming & diving opens up the 2017-18 regular season slate this Friday, Oct. 6, as the Yellow Jackets host Atlantic Coast Conference foe Pittsburgh at 3 p.m. at the McAuley Aquatic Center. It will also serve as the “Pink Meet” for the Yellow Jackets in support of breast cancer support and awareness.
“The season is finally here and we are excited to be opening up at home in McAuley,” commented head coach Courtney Shealy Hart. “We got a little taste of meet competition last weekend with our White vs. Gold meet, but the season and ACC competition is another level. Starting the season off against an ACC foe like Pitt is going to help us as a team jump right into what is going to be a tough and competitive year. We have worked on a lot of little things this week and now we need to carry them over versus Pitt on Friday.”
Like the Jackets, the Panthers will be starting its 2017-18 season on Friday afternoon as well.
Last year, the Tech men’s team defeated the Panthers 199-100, while the women’s team fell to Pitt 162-137 in the double-dual meet at Boston College in Chestnut Hill, Mass.
However, this is a new season for the Yellow Jackets, as the roster boasts a total of 22 freshmen in 2017-18. In fact, the squad list consists of a total of 41 underclassmen overall – 19 sophomores and 22 freshmen – out of 62 student-athletes combined on the men’s and women’s swimming and diving teams.
While a number of newcomers will be asked to contribute immediately, the Jackets do return some experience on both the men’s and women’s teams led by co-captains Rodrigo Correia,Colt Williamson, Sara Gilbert and Kira de Bruyn.
2017 NCAA Swimming & Diving Championship participants and Tech record holders Correia and Moises Loschi, along with Williamson, the 500 free school record holder, seniors Brad Oberg, Alex Kimpel and Noah Harasz, and junior divers Matt Casillas and Nolan Mallet all return this year for a men’s team that improved throughout the year last season which culminated with a strong number of individual performances at the 2017 ACC Championships.
On the women’s side, junior record holders Iris Wang and Laura Branton headline a group of returners in seniors Morgan Lyons, Kaitlin Kitchens, Alex Rieger and Megan Young, as well as fellow upperclassmen Lila Best, Megan Hansen, Florina Ilie and Gilbert who all contributed for the Jackets last season.
The Yellow Jackets also have a strong corp. of sophomores on the men’s and women’s teams that continued to get better as the season wore on last year in their first on The Flats and are expected to contribute even more in year two this season.
The dual meet versus Pitt is one of only five home events for the Yellow Jackets in 2017-18, as Tech will also host Delta State on Oct. 28, the Georgia Tech Invitational on Nov. 16-18, Emory on Jan. 27 and the Arena Pro Series competition on Mar. 1-3.
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