New season, same results.
Led by fifth-year head coach Brad Bowser, the Rowan men’s swimming & diving team is already on track to replicate last season’s results that brought them their second consecutive New Jersey Athletic Conference (NJAC) title.
Just like last year, they opened up with a loss against New York University (NYU) on Sept. 20 and have followed it up this time with four straight commanding wins, three of which have come against conference opponents.
“I would say that after that first meet against NYU where we swam well time-wise, [NYU] just had more depth,” Bowser said. “So their team was a little bit stronger. When it comes to the rest of the season [so far], we just swam through it. We knew we were going to win so we put people in off-events. The big thing for us is trying to lately, and in the past couple of weeks, is just hone-in on endurance and get our training back up and stronger with the guys.”
And just like last season, Bowser always knows whether his team is going to come out of a meet with a win or not.
“Swimming is different,” Bowser said. “I can walk into a meet and know if we’re going to lose or win. It’s kind of like record doesn’t really matter to me. It’s how we’re swimming the meet and how we’re competing. Like, what are our times? So, you know, we started off strong. We swam in a good pool. That’s where it’s different also. We’re swimming in pools that aren’t as strong as ours.”
Although the team is still performing at a high level, despite graduating seniors, just as those of Bowser’s past have done so well, there’s missing pieces that could’ve made the Profs much, much better.
“What hurt us the most isn’t so much the graduation,” Bowser said. “It was the people that were supposed to be stepping up that either became academically ineligible or they left the team because they pursued other things. So that really put us a little bit more at filling in our holes than others. So what we face this year is those people stepping up into those positions. We’re missing really three people that should be here that aren’t here.”
The loss of those swimmers have hit the team rankings-wise, but Bowser still believes that the Brown and Gold will develop and showcase top-talent in the region throughout the year.
“Right now it’s doing more recruiting and getting ourselves back into place,” Bowser said. “We still have our top swimmers, we’ll still be at NCAA’s, we’ll still probably win the Mets (Metropolitan Conference Championships), we’ll still probably win the NJAC. We should’ve probably been a top-10 team in the country. We’ll be lucky if we break top-20. But we’ll see what happens. We have a lot of guys, we have a lot of talent on the team that can step up and make some big drops and see whether they can sneak into the NCAA’s.”
After a week of diving invitationals, the team heads to Worcester, Massachusetts, for the WPI Gompei Invitational from Nov. 30 to Dec. 2.
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