After a well-earned break for the UConn swimming and diving team, it will take on Southern Connecticut State University this Friday, Dec. 4, at the Wolff-Zackin Natatorium in Storrs. The team hopes to ride the momentum it established before Thanksgiving break, when it took third in the Bucknell Invitational in Lewisburg, Pennsylvania, behind only Towson University and Bucknell University.
The big stars of that meet were Niahm Hofland and Maggie Donlevy, who both shone throughout the event. Hofland swam Big East Conference-best times in the 1650-yard freestyle and the 500-yard freestyle, showing her poise in the endurance events. Meanwhile, Donlevy proved to be an A-team swimmer, anchoring UConn’s best relay teams and placing highly in individual events.
The visitor, Southern Connecticut State University, has had a very rough start to their season. Their record to start this season is 0-3-1, with no Northeast-10 conference play yet. They started their season with two losses in a tri-meet in West Chester, Pennsylvania to West Chester University (212-74) and Shippensburg University (143-133). They followed that with a 149-149 tie with Worcester Polytechnic University in Worcester, Massachusetts and a 193-95 loss to Iona College. If that wasn’t disappointing enough, the SCSU Owls finished third in the Fairfield Invitational, placing ahead of only Manhattan College, and behind Fairfield University and Sacred Heart University. The Owls come into this meet with the hopes of performing better than they have this year, and perhaps with some luck and strong swimming, defeating the Huskies.
The Huskies take on the SCSU Owls for the first time since 2019. UConn took the last match, 153-107, in a decisive victory. In fact, the Huskies haven’t lost to the Owls since 2016.
Given the history of the matchup, the Huskies are expected to dominate the Owls on Friday. The Huskies can use this as a get-right meet, focusing on their fundamentals and getting into top-level form on their way to a well-earned win that might help set up the rest of their season.