Holy Cross Women’s Swimming & Diving Ready To Kick Off Season

Maggie Beaudouin

By Anna Poulter-Hendrickson
Special to GoHolyCross.com

The Holy Cross women's swimming and diving team is looking to pick up where it left off last season, after breaking six school records at the Patriot League Championship. Head coach Barry Parenteau returns 19 of 27 letterwinners from a year ago, including four student-athletes whose names now reside on the school record board.  The loss of graduating seniors and students studying abroad will play a big factor on the lineup this season, as Parenteau looks to bolster the squad with the addition of eight newcomers to the team. The Crusaders will look to senior captains Gael Carter, Emily Greeke, Erin Meegan and Molly O'Brien to lead the team in and out of the pool. Holy Cross will kick off the season at the Hart Center on Oct. 15 with a dual meet against Fairfield.

Backstroke

Holy Cross returns its top performers from a year ago in the 50, 100 and 200 backstroke. Sophomore Kristen Desrosiers hit a season-best mark of 28.48 seconds in the leadoff spot of the 200 medley relay at the Patriot League Championship, Carter swam a season-best time of 59.97 seconds in the 100 back at the Terrier Invitational and junior Maggie Beaudouin finished with a season-best time of 2:11.28 in the 200 back at the Patriot League Championship. Together, the trio will lead the Crusaders in the backstroke events. The return of juniors Emily D'Angelo and Colleen Bucci, along with the addition of newcomers Lauren LaRocco and Megan Marrkand will add depth for Holy Cross in the backstroke events.

Breaststroke

The loss of Maggie Gousman, the school-record holder in the 100 and 200 breaststroke, combined with the absence of junior Kendra Kline due to junior year abroad, will create opportunities for sophomores Katelyn Desrosiers and Natalie Livingston to lead the Crusaders in the breaststroke events this season. Last season, Livingston recorded the second-fastest times on the team in the 100 breast (1:10.30) and 200 breast (2:31.94), while Desrosiers was right behind her, finishing with the third best team times in both events. Freshman Eileen McGowan will help bolster Holy Cross' lineup in the breaststroke events.

Butterfly

School record holder, junior Annie O'Shea, returns to lead the Crusaders in the butterfly events. O'Shea finished with a school-record time of 2:09.33 in the 200 fly at the Patriot League Championship. Carter along with Meegan and sophomores Kristen Desrosiers, Jill Chudwick, Samantha Hullihen and Andrea Wiegman will add to the depth in the fly events for the Crusaders. Carter marked a team-best time in the 100 fly at the Terrier Invitational a year ago, while Desrosiers recorded the second best time on the team at the Patriot League Championship. The Crusaders will look to repeat their dominance in the fly events at the Worcester City Championships as O'Shea and Chudwick finished first and second in the 200 fly, while O'Shea took home the title in the 100 fly.  The addition of freshman Cassandra Perry will strengthen Holy Cross' lineup in the butterfly events.

Freestyle

Parenteau can expect all of the sprint free returners to lead the Crusaders this season.  Beaudouin returns as the top Crusader in the 50 (25.46) and 200 (1:57.96) free events, while Kristen Desrosiers returns as the top performer in the 100 free (54.73). Beaudouin and Carter were members of the school-record breaking 200 free relay at the Patriot League Championship, while Desrosiers and Carter were members of the school record breaking 400 free relay. Sophomore Laura Webber also returns to lead the Crusaders, as a year ago she hit top five team-best times in the 50, 100 and 200 free events.  The return of D'Angelo, Greek, junior Lauren Leary and sophomore Nicole Passa, along with the addition of newcomers Gina Mannix, Kelsey Poremba and Clare Reidy, will allow Parenteau flexibility between the individual and relay events sprint events.

Depth in the distance events continues for Parenteau in 2010-2011, as he returns all of his top performers from last season. A year ago, O'Shea led the Crusaders with team-best times in the 500 (5:18.15) and 1,000 free (11:15.70), while Meegan swam a team-best time in the 1,650 at the Harold Anderson Invitational. Beaudouin hit season-best marks in the 500 at the Patriot League Championship and swam a season-best time in the 1,000 against Providence. Parenteau can count on the experience of juniors Monica Cullen and Christine Karout, along with D'Angelo, O'Brien, Kristen Desrosiers and Chudwick to lead Holy Cross in all distance events. Rookies Perry and Marrkland will also contribute to the lineup in the distance freestyle events.

Individual Medley

Exiting Crusader Alisha Carrazza left her mark on the individual medley in her last meet of the season, breaking the school record in the 200 IM at the 2010 Patriot League Championship. Kristen Desrosiers is primed to take on the challenge of leading the Crusaders in the IM events. Last season, Desrosiers recorded the team's best time in the 400 IM (4:49.83) at the Harold Anderson Invitational and swam the fastest time in the 200 IM (2:13.91) out of all returners. Katelyn Desrosiers also returns as a top swimmer in the individual medley events, as she finished her freshman campaign with a season-best time in the 200 IM at the Patriot League Championship. O'Brien and Meegan return and together with Chudwick add depth and flexibility in the medley events. Rookies LaRocco and McGowan will look to find a way to make a splash for Holy Cross in the individual medley.

Diving

Senior Sarah Kearns, along with junior Lindsay Mlazgar, will lead the Crusaders on the diving boards this season. Mlazgar returns as the top performer in the one meter, eleven dives and three meter ,six dives competitions, while Kearns returns as the top performer in the one meter, six dive competition. Head diving coach Wil Aybar expects to see growth within the diving program this season, as he welcomes two newcomers to the program, senior Sam Lenhardt and freshman Shannon O'Connor

Schedule

Holy Cross will open the season at the Hart Center on Friday, Oct. 15 against Fairfield and then welcome Patriot League opponent Lehigh on Saturday, Oct. 16. The team will travel to Siena for dual meet competition on Wednesday, Oct. 27 and then travel to Springfield on Oct. 30. Holy Cross travels to the Terrier Invitational hosted by Boston University on Nov. 19-21 and then closes out the first half of the season on Dec. 3-4 at the Harold Anderson Invitational hosted by Rhode Island.

The Crusaders kick off the 2011 portion of the season on Jan. 21 when they host the Worcester City Championship. Holy Cross travels to Providence on Jan. 29 and then close out the regular season at home on Feb. 5 against Bryant. Holy Cross will wrap up the season at the Patriot League Championship hosted by Bucknell on Feb. 17-19 in Lewisburg, Pa.