It was a busy day in the Adele and Reuben Thomas Swimming Pool in the Bradley Center as the men’s and women’s swim teams hosted Widener University for their final regular-season meets of the season. The men’s swim team won 167-94, while the women’s swim team narrowly lost by a score of 134-118. In addition to this being the final meet, Ramapo also celebrated its senior swimmers with its annual Senior Day.
“Senior Day was great!” said Emile Eeckhout, one of six seniors honored at the meet. “It’s so nice to be honored with your team and family there. It just feels rewarding.” Other seniors that were honored were Michael Sooy, Jeffrey Horn, Kaitlin Balasaygun, Katie Riva and Amy Butcher.
“Our senior meet was such an amazing experience. It was the best possible way to finish off my dual meet career for swim. The underclassmen on the team put in so much work to decorate the pool and make gifts for all of us seniors, and they really helped make it such a memorable day.”
– Kaitlin Balasaygun
Eeckhout had a successful day swimming. First, he was part of the 200-yard medley relay team, who won the relay with a time of 2:01.08. The team was composed of Eeckhout, Brendan McDevitt, Benjamin Gomez and Joseph Swede. Eeckhout also placed first in the 200-yard freestyle with a time of 1:51.61 and in the 200-yard breaststroke with a time of 2:12.59.
“The atmosphere at the meet was amazing,” Eeckhout said about Senior Day. “Everyone swam fast as we’re gearing towards our championship meet.”
Other notable performances for the Roadrunners were Samuel De Leon, who won the 100-yard breaststroke with a time of 1:02.23 and Sooy, who won the 500-yard freestyle with a time of 5:07.06. The final individual winners of the day were Swede, who won the 50-yard freestyle with his 22.70 second time and Gomez, who won the 100-yard freestyle with a time of 49.89 seconds.
Although the women’s team narrowly lost, they got off to a hot start. The 200-yard medley relay team, made up of Alazne Sudupe, Cami Yovich, Valeria Pages and Camila Mercado took home first place with a time of 2:01.08. Individually, Pages placed first in the 200-yard freestyle and the 100-yard freestyle with her times of 2:01.52 and 56.26, respectively. Mercado also ended her day with two first-place finishes, one in the 100-yard breaststroke and the other in the 200-yard breaststroke
“Our senior meet was such an amazing experience,” said Balasaygun. “It was the best possible way to finish off my dual meet career for swim. The underclassmen on the team put in so much work to decorate the pool and make gifts for all of us seniors, and they really helped make it such a memorable day.”
Despite the regular season being over for both swim teams, they have their eyes set on the Metropolitan Conference Championships on Feb. 17 at Rutgers University. “As the season nears completion, we’re staying serious and focusing on our goal, which is the championship meet in two weeks,” said Eeckhout.
It was a bittersweet day for the seniors, who are seeing their swimming days at Ramapo slowly come to an end.
“I’m really sad that the season is coming to a close,” said Balasaygun. “It’s been a great four years swimming for Ramapo, and I’m nervous but also excited for my last championship ever. No matter how I swim, I just want to focus on enjoying this last season with my team here.”
Featured photo courtesy of Emile Eeckhout