Swimming sinks Tiffin

The Gannon men’s swim team sunk the Tiffin Dragons (Ohio), 151-43, Saturday in their home opener for the 2015-16 season under the leadership of new head coach Darren Suroviec.

Suroviec begins his first season as head coach after serving as an assistant coach in 2014-15. He began his coaching career in 2013 at Edinboro University.

Suroviec competed for four years in the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference as a Division II athlete at Edinboro, setting records in 100-yard butterfly, 400 medley relay and 200 medley relay.

He graduated from Edinboro with a bachelor of science in health and physical education with dual concentrations in human performance and recreation administration. He also received dual minors in athletic coaching and fitness instruction/personal training.

The win over Tiffin moves the Knights to 2-5 and they set their sights on the Spartans of Case Western Reserve and the Wolverines of Grove City College at 1 p.m. Saturday at Donnell Pool in Cleveland.

In the win, 12 Gannon swimmers earned PSAC qualifying times.

The Knights went 1-2-3 in the 100 freestyle with senior Nils Groeppler posting a winning time of 51.12, followed by sophomore Noah Donovan (54.95) and freshman Dionsio Carey (56.17).

Donovan said the team is “pretty beat up right now” as it trains for a big meet at Wooster next month, but he added that it is a product of Suroviec’s approach to training.

“We aren’t swimming are fastest but it is all part of the plan,” he said. “This year is a big transition year for the Gannon swim team, both men’s and women’s. “

Senior Ryan Carter touched first in the 200 freestyle with a PSAC qualifying time of 1:47.89. Senior Denys Fedorchenko finished first in the 200 IM with a PSAC time of 1:57.50.

Donovan also finished third in the 200 IM with a PSAC time of 2:04.08.

Fedorchenko came back for a second top finish in the 100 freestyle with another PSAC qualifying time of 47.94. Moments later, junior Matt Loughner took third with a PSAC time of 49.51.

Sophomore Michael Weiser and freshman Allan Collins both swam PSAC qualifying times in the 500 freestyle. Weiser swam a 21.98 and took first place. Collins swam a 22.67 and took third.

Weiser was happy with the overwhelming win against Tiffin, especially at home. He sees a bright future for the team down the road and is pleased with the new leadership under Suroviec.

“The rest of the season is looking pretty good as well, we have a pretty solid team this year that can compete against the other schools pretty well,” he said.

“Having Darren as the new head coach is awesome– he’s enthusiastic, confident in his abilities and he knows what he’s doing, which is great to see. I have a lot of respect for him.”

In other events, the Knights wept the 100 backstroke with Collins in first with a time of 55:97, Trevor Durnwald taking second with a conference qualifying time of 57.00 and Cary finishing third with a time of 57.34.

The Knights took first in both relays with the squad of Carey, Groeppler, Weiser and senior Mike Smith in the 200 medley with a time of 1:38.90.

The team of Weiser, Groeppler, Loughner and Collins beat out Tiffin by a touch in the 200 freestyle with a time of 1:28.46.

Donovan credits much of the win to Suroviec and his staff for giving the team a new edge to its performance.

“Coach Darren has a great work ethic and drive and gives the team a new spark that was not there before,” he said. “I can see the team reaching incredible heights under his coaching.”

After Case Western Reserve, the Knights don’t have a meet until Thursday, Dec. 3, for a mid-season invitational in Wooster, Ohio.

 

BRANDON JACES