Black Knights Split Action in Patriot League Debut

LEWISBURG, PA. – The Army West Point swimming & diving team split its meet hosted by Patriot League opponent Bucknell on Saturday afternoon, with the men earning a dominant 206-92 victory and the women dropping a 183-117 result.

The men’s win, which marked their 10th-straight over the Bison, saw the team surpass 200 dual points for the first time this season. Army secured the top finish in 15 out of 16 events while sweeping both the 1000 Free and the 1-meter dive. In the women’s action, the Black Knights were led by Meghan Cole and Minh Donnell, who both collected a pair of first-place finishes in individual events.

The Men’s Meet
Army built its lead early in the action against Bucknell, collecting 64 of the 92 points available in the first five races. Both Jacob Powell and Evan Zhang, who helped the Black Knights win the opening 200 Medley Relay, added individual triumphs in the 100 Back and 100 Breast to push the Cadets out front.

The team also got an early boost in the scoring thanks to the trio of Ian Tansill, Evan Yoo and Wes Tate, as they swept the 1000-yard freestyle.

While continuing to take home events, Army’s team points got another bump when Daniel Alaimo, David Manelis and Isaac Newman grabbed the top three spots in the 1-meter dive.
Both Alaimo (322.05) and Manelis (307.88) surpassed scores of 300, while Newman finished with a mark of 279.00.

The team continued to dominate as the competition went on, securing four-straight races before Bucknell answered with its first victory of the day. A Bison duo finished first and second in the 100-yard butterfly to stop the Cadets from earning their 13th-straight event win.

Army responded by grabbing victories in the final two individual events of the day, as Alaimo won the 3M dive and Yoo touched the wall first in the 400 IM. The Cadets then closed things out with a decisive result in the 200 Free Relay, as the quartet of Owen Harlow, Tanner Falls, Powell and Nick Isenhower out-touched the second-place Bison entry by over 2.5 seconds.

The Women’s Meet
Bucknell controlled the action out of the gate, winning each of the first five events. Tania Rodriguez, Lauren Carag and Aurelie Migault each helped to keep the Black Knights in it early, as Rodriguez (1000 Free) and Carag (100 Back) picked up third-place finishes and Migault touched second in the 100 Breast.

Eventually, Melinda Zhang posted the Cadets’ first victory of the meet, as she grabbed nine points with her top performance in the 200 Fly. Zhang led the field by almost three full seconds and was joined in the scoring by Jasmine Coe, who placed fourth.

Army gained some momentum following Zhang’s effort, as Meghan Cole took home the following event with a 23.80-second swim in the 50 Free. Cole was one of three Cadets to score in the event, as Sammie Edwards finished third and Angela Huang placed fifth. Minh Donnell then made it three-straight victories for the team, as she took home the 1-meter dive with a score of 265.65.

In response to the Black Knights’ scoring spree, Bucknell got back on top with a victory in the 100 Free. The Bison led in four-straight events before Cole added her second individual triumph of the day in the 100 Fly. Both Coe (fourth) and Clara Williams (fifth) also scored to help the Cadets pick up 12 total points before Donnell added an additional victory in the 3-meter dive.

Though the home team swept the final individual race of the afternoon, the 400 IM, Army finished the meet on a high note by winning the tightly-contested 200 Free Relay. The quartet of Edwards, Rea Smith, Cole and Huang touched the wall less than a second ahead of the second-place Bison to grab the team’s final points of the day.

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