The College of Staten Island men’s and women’s swimming and diving programs earned a split in the pool last night in the season opening meet for both teams.  The CSI men just did edge the Setters, 88-86, while Pace outlasted the CSI women, 120-80.

On the men’s side, CSI won five of 13 events, and essentially sealed the meet at the diving board, where the duo of John Pignatelli and Andy Gil earned the Dolphins 26 points to the Setters’ zero.  Yury Zimarev was the only other Dolphin to take a first place finish, while CSI also struck up a first-place finish in the 200-yard Medley Relay.

Pace was able to wrestle away the lead when Nick Targonski took first place for Pace in the 200-yard Individual Medley, giving the Setters a 36-33 edge, and from there it seemed like a meet destined to go down to the finish.  CSI responded when Pignatelli took gold, and Gil silver in the 1-meter diving event, and Zimarev followed as the only participant in the 200-yard Butterfly, posting a quality time of 2:06.14.  Pace took first place in the next three events before diving came around again, swinging things in CSI’s favor.

CSI clinched the win when Mitchell Lovell took second and Jian Wang third in the 200-yard Breaststroke.  That gave CSI an 88-75 lead going into the final event, the 200-yard Freestyle Relay.  Pace was the only participant in the final event, but couldn’t catch the Dolphins, who improved to 1-0 on the season.

On the women’s ledger, CSI got some inspired performances, but Pace used their incredible depth to rack up the points in many events.  Still the Dolphins took first place in four events.

By Event 19, the 500-yard Freestyle, Pace already had the match in hand, CSI was awarded points for the duration of the meet and claimed gold for the first time this season when sophomore Vasiliki Stergioula raced in a time of 7:26.83 to land first place, followed by Priscila Alvarez’ 7:50.19.

The meet also saw a pair of third place finishes for Joanna Irizarry-Zaraza, and freshman Stephanie Collyer, who saw her first collegiate diving performance.

CSI’s next meet will be on Monday, when just the women will go on the road to take on Hunter College at 6pm.  The men return to action on November 4, when they host John Jay alongside the women in their home opener at 6pm.