The Lehigh men and women’s swimming and diving teams held their annual Brown and White Meet on Friday, Sept. 20. The meet serves as a preseason event to help Lehigh prepare for its Patriot League schedule.
Assistant coach Eric Bugby recognizes the importance of preseason training, but said competitive environments like these are instrumental in helping swimmers adjust to the demands of the regular season.
“No amount of practice, weights or supplemental training gets you ready better than standing up on the blocks and racing your teammates,” Bugby said. “It allows them to experience true fatigue for the first time.”
The swimmers also recognize the importance of the Brown and White Meet. Freshman Mary Mahoney said she was nervous heading into her first race as a collegiate athlete, but understood the meet served as a way to familiarize with life as a Division I swimmer.
“This meet definitely has prepared me for the season to come,” Mahoney said. “It got me accustomed to how warming up, racing and cheering with a Lehigh cap on feels like. Winning as a team always feels better than winning by yourself.”
Freshman Nick Lynam said the meet was the best way to kick off the season.
Lynam said the Mountain Hawks have the advantage of swimming at home at the Brown and White Meet, which gives everyone a chance to become accustomed, or readjust, to Jacobs Pool. He said it’s a great opportunity to not only race your own teammates, but to help the coaches identify areas where individuals need to improve upon before the season commences.
Although the meet offers a glimpse of what the upcoming season may hold, the coaches never set expectations. Bugby said one of the main goals this year was to understand the team’s dynamic and its ability to be competitive as it prepares for the official season.
However, Bugby said he was not disappointed. He said the results of this year’s meet showed the team possesses significant potential.
“We learned that we have a great group of first-years, men and women, and that the team is ready to take a big step forward,” Bugby said. “Everyone came back to school in good shape from swimming this summer, but most of our speed will come in the winter and spring. However, we can fine-tune the details, technique and race strategy now.”
Lynam said spirits were high as the swimmers left the locker room following the meet. The team’s performance fired him up and made him especially eager for the upcoming season.
“Many of us were thrilled with our performance, and some knew what they had to work on leaving the meet,” Lynam said. “There are very talented people on Lehigh Swimming and Diving and it is amazing to see what we all can accomplish as a team.”
Lehigh will host Boston University at Jacob’s Pool on Saturday, Oct. 12, at 1 p.m. to start the regular season.