The Eastern Michigan University women’s swim and dive team finished its dual meet season with a win over Albion College on Feb. 1. The win ensured that the team would finish with an undefeated record in dual meets for the season, going 8-0.
This is the third time in program history that the Eagles have accomplished this, with all three times coming in the last 10 years. The first time happened during the 2012-2013 season, and the second time happened during the 2016-2017 season.
“In regard to this year, I think a lot of people came into this season with a chip on their shoulder after what happened to the guys team,” senior Delaney Duncan said. “So, we were a lot more dedicated and focused this year. We were more determined this year.”
Going back to the beginning of the 2016-2017 season, the Eagles have a dual meet record of 24-1, with their lone loss coming on the opening meet of last season against Kentucky on Oct. 14.
That winning streak can be further traced back to 2014, the last time the Eagles had lost to a MAC opponent. Since then, they have gone 17-0 against MAC opponents, with the most recent win coming against Bowling Green State University on Jan. 26.
Even with all the good things that the Eagles have done this year, it has not come without challenges.
“We had to go to a different meet this year,” Duncan said. “We went to this big invite in Denison, Ohio, and we’ve never done a meet like that before. It was very similar to our championship meet. I am a senior and have never been to a meet like that in December. Learning how to swim fast in the morning and at night in the middle of the hard part of the season was definitely a challenge.”
The season hasn’t just been about winning dual meets, it has been about breaking personal bests. For example, during the dual meet against Wayne State University on Jan. 19, the Eagles earned 23 season best performances from the team.
Duncan was part of that performance. During the 100 Breaststroke, she finished with a time of 1:01.53. That time was good enough to finish first for that event and was the second fastest mark in the MAC this season in that event. The person who had the fastest time in that event? It’s Duncan herself; she almost beat her record of 1:00.88 for the season.
The season is far from over, however, the team will next compete in the Ohio State Invitational from Feb. 16-17. After that they will take part in the MAC Championships from Feb. 27-Mar. 2, and then end their season with taking part in the NCAA Championships from March 15-16 and 20-23.
“I think the group of girls we have going to MAC are very dominating, and I think we will bring a very good presence,” Duncan said. “I think at both meets, Ohio State and MAC, we will have a lot time drops.”