Swim / Dive Opens Championship Season Wednesday
GREENSBORO, N.C. – The University of Miami swimming & diving team officially opens championship season on Wednesday with the first day of competition at the 2019 ACC Swimming & Diving Championships.
The Hurricanes (6-5), who posted a combined 14 lifetime-best times this past Saturday at their annual First Chance Meet, will look to continue their momentum at the Greensboro Aquatic Center.
Kershaw said a key reason for Miami’s success this season was its team unity, and he expects that to shine through during the four-day competition.
“Swimming can be a pretty individual sport, but that’s not how we do it here in Miami. I think the team has really honed in on that,” Kershaw said. “This weekend is going to be filled with a lot of individual performances, but in the end, it’s going to be a team effort. No team walks away with every swimmer scoring points and we’ll be no different, but every point that we score is going to be the result of a group effort.
“Everyone knows that they’ve all made the sacrifices together throughout the year, and they’re looking forward to supporting each other and getting behind each and every person and helping that person do whatever it takes to get to the wall for the finish.”
Redshirt junior diver David Dinsmore will look to capture his third straight ACC gold medal in the men’s platform, while redshirt senior diver Briadam Herrera is hoping to add to a trophy case that includes four ACC gold medals and two ACC silver medals. Redshirt sophomore Alicia Blagg will attempt to defend her ACC gold medal in the 3-meter springboard, won last year in Greensboro.
“Diving is going to be a strength for us, as it always is, and we’re looking forward to that,” head swimming coach Andy Kershaw said. “We get it rolling with swimming in the evening Wednesday with the two relays, and I’m excited – I think it’s a great way to start.”
Kershaw said that while his team is hoping to qualify as many swimmers for finals as possible during the event, another important goal is qualifying for the NCAA Women’s Swimming & Diving Championships, held in Austin, Texas from March 20-23.
“When we get people in finals, we’re going to do everything we can, with a total group effort, to get people to the wall as fast as we can,” Kershaw said. “That’s going to serve multiple purposes. That’s going to give us the most points we can get, but hopefully get us to qualify some of our women for NCAA Championships. That’s another big goal. That might consist of individuals, but I think that ultimately everyone believes that that’s going to be a team effort.”
While several swimmers moved up in the Miami record books last weekend at the First Chance Meet – including freshman Zorry Mason, freshman Maria Artigas Fernandez and sophomore Chandler Sensibaugh – Kershaw said he expects the team’s consistent effort in year-round training to prove fruitful in Greensboro.
“It’s going to get some personal satisfaction, seeing that come to fruition, whether it’s posting best times or highest finishes they’ve ever had – all kinds of thing like that,” he said. “I think the team is in a really exciting spot. They’re really looking forward to getting this thing going and putting the correct end to this season as we head into championship season.”
The week in Greensboro will mark the final meet as Hurricanes for a group of tri-captains in Katie Sickinger, Sydney Story and Roxanne Yu.
“I know the seniors are really proud of the team around them, and I’m super proud of the leadership and what they’ve done,” Kershaw said. “The alumni that they’ve followed, what they’ve learned from them, what they’ve carried forward and what they’ve taught our younger team members…there’s a lot of good things to come this week and we’re certainly looking forward to it.”