DARTMOUTH, Mass. – The University of Massachusetts Dartmouth women's swimming and diving team is set to host the 2016-17 Little East Conference Women's Swimming and Diving Championships on Saturday, Feb. 4 inside the Tripp Athletic Center Natatorium. The Corsairs are looking to raise the team conference championship trophy for the first time since 2005 in what is expected to be a closely contested meet.
Date and Time: Saturday, February 4, 2017 at 11am
Venue: Tripp Athletic Center Natatorium
Field: Eastern Connecticut State University, Keene State College, UMass Dartmouth, Plymouth State University, Western Connecticut State University, Westfield State University
Senior captain Kaya Flanagan (Fairhaven, Mass.) is expected to have another strong showing at the Little East Conference Championship meet. The Fairhaven, Mass. native is seeded second in the 200-yard butterfly with a season-best time of 2 minutes, 29.16 seconds. She is also ranked fifth in the 200-yard freestyle (2:06.54) and 200-yard backstroke (2:19.04).
Junior Chrissy Deveaux (North Andover, Mass.) will give the Corsairs a boast in the middle distance races. She is projected to place third in the 1,000-yard freestyle (11:33.81) and fourth in the 500-yard freestyle (5:37.49). Senior Yulyssa Diaz (Dorchester, Mass.) and senior captain Jill Boyle (Westport, Mass.) can pad the UMass Dartmouth point total in the 1,000-yard freestyle, entering the race seeded fifth (Diaz, 11:54.22) and ninth (Boyle, 12:16.11), respectively.
The Corsairs will also showcase a talented group of freshmen swimmers. Sarah Murphy (Braintree, Mass.) has the potential to earn at least 30 points in her three individual swims. She is seeded second in the 400-yard IM with a time of 4 minutes, 58.62 seconds, while posting the fifth fastest time in the 200-yard breaststroke (2:39.12) and sixth best in the 100-yard breaststroke (1:14.66). Classmate Brienna Harrison (Lakeville, Mass.) will make her debut in the 100-yard backstroke and 100-yard butterfly, respectively. She is seeded sixth in both races. Carly Cahill (Charlestown, Mass.) and Abigail Wilson (Newburyport, Mass.) are also expected to make a splash for the hosts. Cahill is ranked among the top-10 entrants in the 50-yard freestyle (7th, 27.76) and 100-yard breaststroke (10th, 1:16.41), while Wilson is tabbed fifth in the 50-yard freestyle (27.31).
Senior Kendra Hebert (Lowell, Mass.) is looking to become the third Corsair in program history to repeat as the 1-meter conference champion and first since Kelly Kidd in 2005. Hebert is the top seed in the championship field after establishing a new Corsair diving record on Jan. 18 at WPI, when she posted a score of 287.05 to shatter her previous high-water mark. She recently completed her qualification into the New England Regional Championship in her last meet at Plymouth State University on January 21.
Hebert is also the favorite in the 3-meter platform in a highly competitive field. The 2016 New England Champion registered a season-high score of 249.07 against Roger Williams. Last year, she earned the top spot on the podium with a score of 241.8.
- Keene State College has captured 10 consecutive and 13 overall Little East Conference Championships.
- The Owls set the team scoring standard during the 2014 championship with 668.5 cumulative points.
- UMass Dartmouth won the team title in 2004 and 2005.
- Kendra Hebert captured both events in the diving well in 2016, winning the 1-meter (219.45) and 3-meter (241.80).
The UMass Dartmouth men's and women's programs will compete in the New England Intercollegiate Swimming and Diving Championship at the Tootell Aquatics Center on the campus of the University of Rhode Island between Thursday, Feb. 16 and Sunday, Feb. 19.