Men's swimming sets the bar high for 2004-05

The Jeffs return five of the six swimmers who contributed to their seventh-place finish at the 2004 NCAA Div. III Championships. Though they lost national champion Mike Pohorylo ’04 to graduation, Bryan Woo ’06 and John Ancona ’07 join All-Americans Ethan Treat ’07 and Rick Estacio ’06 for another year in the pool.

Treat had a breakout season as a first-year, taking fifth place in the 400-yard individual medley and fourth in the 200-yard butterfly at Nationals while setting NESCAC records in both events.

Estacio had an excellent sophomore campaign, winning the 50-yard backstroke at the NESCAC Championships. At Nationals, he finished eighth in the 100-yard backstroke and seventh in the 200-yard backstroke. Woo also performed impressively at Nationals, placing 10th and 14th in the 100-yard butterfly and 50-yard freestyle, respectively. Woo had the team’s best times of the season in the sprint freestyle and butterfly events.

Ancona was Amherst’s surprise performer at NESCACs, finishing second and third in 100- and 200-yard breaststroke events to qualify for Nationals. His times only improved as the season progressed, which bodes well for his sophomore campaign.

Other key swimmers returning include co-captain seniors Dan Gach and Chuck Clinton. Clinton was a member of the medley team that placed third and seventh in the 400- and 200-yard medley relays at Nationals. Estacio, Woo and Pohorylo rounded out the relay. Gach turned in solid times all season and will provide important leadership out of the pool as well.

Also returning are seniors Nick Federico and Colin Porter, who swim butterfly and freestyle, respectively.

The biggest hurdle for Amherst last year was the absence of experienced divers. Jay Buchman ’07 stepped up valiantly to earn points for the Jeffs at dual meets, but his lack of pre-collegiate experience showed at NESCACs where he failed to earn points. This season, however, the team has added two first-year divers, Connor Boyd and Adam Bookman, as well as senior Chris Hunt to the roster.

“Last year we had a few weak events but between the three accomplished divers and our large freshman class, we will be able to fill those gaps and be a stronger team.  Looking at the freshmen in the water, it is clear we have a really strong group of swimmers,” said Treat.

In addition to the two divers, the Jeffs have a rookie class that boasts five swimmers. Their roster will number a solid 26 once the second semester begins and juniors Estacio, Tom Gonnella and Adam Lewkowitz return from abroad.

“We may have some close meets first semester, but we are optimistic about our prospects for the remainder of the season and look forward to bringing a full roster to NESCACs,” said Federico.