Day one of the CUNYAC Swimming & Diving Championships at Lehman College concluded last night, finalizing six events. The College of Staten Island saw their share of highlights, earning seven gold and one silver medal on both sides of the ledger. The CSI men stand in third place with 202 points, 62 points behind leaders Baruch College, while the women sit in fifth place with 87 points.
The CSI men may have been lacking in depth, not scoring many positions but sweeping all the first place finishes in incredible fashion. Diving took center stage first, and CSI frosh John Pignatelli was dynamic on the one-meter boards, scoring 284.15 points, 66 points ahead of Lehman’s Victor Pren. When diving concluded, it was the swimmers turn to steal the show. CSI was up to the task.
In the 200-yard Freestyle Relay, the team of Yury Zimarev, Timur Rakhimov, Andrey Tarasov, and Danila Novikov finished at an even 1:28.00, a full second and a half better than their own seed time, and just a hair better than the Baruch foursome, that placed just four-one hundredths of a second behind for the silver. Later, in the 400 Medley Relay, CSI was almost a full eight seconds ahead of the pack, as Vladislav Romanov joined Zimarev, Rakhimov, and Novikov in the relay, coming in at 3:32.92.
A CSI battle then ensued in the individual event of the 500-yard Freestyle. There, Romanov finished a comfortable 10+ seconds ahead of teammate Rakhimov, with a time of 4:49.17, which was also 11 seconds ahead of the senior’s seed time. Jian Wang also earned points, finishing in 15th place with a time of 9:34.14. Tarasov had his turn to shine individually, blazing to a 1:56.97 finish in the 200-yard Individual Medley, easily taking first place. In the 50-yard Freestyle, it was Zimarev’s mark at 21.57 that left everyone in awe. The sophomore broke a CUNYAC record in the event, taking gold by almost a full second over the rest of the pack. Mitchell Lovell and Nolan Reese also had top 10 finishes with times of 25.72 and 28.07, respectively.
Over on the women side, the Dolphins certainly started on the right foot, when Stephanie Collyer earned 301.75 points on the three-meter diving boards. She was uncontested in the event, earning gold. Still, the performance was incredibly impressive, as Collyer out-did her personal best score by 97.25 points.
In relay events, CSI came in seventh place in the 200-yard Freestyle Relay and then eighth place in the 400-yard Medley Relay. In individual events, CSI earned points in every event. In the 200-yard Individual Medley, Lauren Overeem bested her personal-best time by five seconds, taking 12th place with a 3:01.91 time, and in the 50-yard Freestyle, Vasiliki Stergioula and Priscila Alvarez finished ninth and tenth respectively, with times of 28.60 and 28.90. Rounding out the individual marks was Joanna Irizarry’s time of 11:02.20 in the 500-yard Freestyle.
The CSI men sit in third place behind leaders Baruch (264 pts.) and Lehman College (259.50). Behind CSI is both Brooklyn (90 pts.) and York College (58.50). On the women’s side, Baruch leads all at (288 pts.) followed by Hunter (251), John Jay College (149), and Lehman (123). Behind CSI’s 87 points sits Brooklyn (75) and York College (28).
The swimming championships resume today at Lehman College at 1pm.