Swim and Dive focused on future after losses at home

Lauren Thomas, news staff

At their 2021 home debut, Northeastern Swimming and Diving lit up the scoreboard at Barletta Natatorium as they took on Boston College and Drexel University. The event marked the Huskies’ first home meet since January 2020, when the team was forced to end their season abruptly due to COVID-19 restrictions. 

The diving portion of the tri-meet took place Friday, Nov. 5 and featured 14 women and six men. Northeastern’s Erin (Kiki) Murphy, a freshman, led the three-meter diving competition with a score of 254.10. 

“I’m really happy with how I did. I was supposed to compete a harder dive, but I decided to go with the one that I felt more confident in,” Murphy said. “I’m really glad that I did it, even though it was a lower degree of difficulty because, at these types of meets, consistency is the most important thing.”

This win marked Murphy’s second consecutive first place finish in the three-meter event. 

“I’m really happy because it’s helped me appreciate the decision I made to go to Northeastern,” Murphy said. “All the success that it’s brought me so far just really helped me solidify and feel more confident in my decision.”

The opposing swimming teams filled the stands to show their support for BC and Drexel. Though their enthusiasm proved distracting to some Northeastern divers, Murphy kept her composure. 

“I have definitely developed a sense of complete concentration on the board where I don’t really get distracted by things like that,” Murphy said. “I’m so fortunate that I’ve had that training. That’s definitely something we did work on in high school. [We worked on] concentration, focusing on your dive, trying to block out all the noise and all the distractions.”

By the end of Friday’s competition, NU led Drexel by 18 points but trailed BC by eight. 

The swimming portion of the meet took place on Saturday, Nov. 6 and ended in an upset for the Huskies who fell to both the Eagles (179-120) and the Dragons (157-142).

Northeastern won four events, including the 200-yard freestyle race, which sophomore Grace Miller triumphed in with a time of 1:54.70.

“I was focusing on making sure that the first half of my races were fast enough, because I tend to pick it up a lot in the second half, so I have enough in the tank to go faster in the beginning,” Miller said. “Over the course of our meets, my times have been consistently going down, so I’m very happy about that.”

The team continues to practice hard through their tri-meets but will begin to ease their regimen going into the Terrier Invite and later for the championship meet.

 “We don’t rest for any of these meets, so we’re all pretty broken down and tired,” Miller said. “With the amount of training we’ve been doing, the results in the pool are really great.”

When asked about her expectations going into the meet, Miller said, “We knew this would be pretty tough competition, so we went into it with the mindset that there will be tough races, we might not win every one, but to stay positive and not let tough races affect us for the rest of the meet. I think we did a pretty good job of that today — definitely great competition from both Drexel and BC.”

Boston College’s robust co-ed team boasts 60 members, an impressive presence on the pool deck. “I think it’s just exciting to see big teams because we’ve trained so much just with ourselves, and we don’t realize, just training as a girls team and seeing that you’re like, ‘Oh, wow, these are very large programs,’” Miller said.

Drexel University’s co-ed team also nearly doubles Northeastern’s roster with a combined total of 50 swimmers and divers compared to Northeastern’s 30. 

“Coming and seeing such a big team — it’s not overwhelming, but you’re taken aback by how large they are,” Miller said. “That large of a team brings a lot of good competition.”

Looking toward the future, the team is optimistic of their chances for improvement. 

“Of course I want to go faster than I have been, and I think that’s pretty feasible just based on the tapering and the training being decreased, and we’ll also be wearing our tech suits for the Terrier Invite,” Miller said. “I’m definitely hoping to see time drops. I feel like our technique is there, and it’s always good to just keep building endurance, which we’ll do this week in practice.”

At their next meet, the Huskies will take on several teams close to home at the Boston University Terrier Invitational.

“You always dive better under pressure, and for me at least, when I have that pressure, when I know that there are girls better than me, I feel like I dive better,” Murphy said. “There’s definitely going to be a lot of competition at the next meet, but I’m excited.”