SAN JUAN, P.R. – The University of Connecticut men’s and women’s swimming programs competed at the 2016 Copa Coqui Invitational on Tuesday, where the two teams each finished on top of their respective sides, posting the highest combined score for the second-straight year to claim the overall meet title. Multiple Huskies earned first-place finishes in the annual event that features swimmers from a variety of colleges across the country.
Two UConn women’s swimmers, freshman Julie Hu (Wilton, Conn.) and junior Deanna Parsons (Ellicott City, Md.), each finished first in one of the 12 individual events in San Juan. Parsons took first in the 100-freestyle, finishing with a time of 1:01.68. She edged out Illinois State’s Savannah Rubocki (1:02.68) and teammate junior Margot Manning (Frederick, Md.), who posted a time of 1:02.89.
Hu recorded a solid time in the 100-breaststroke, winning the race in 1:17.48. The rookie beat out fellow Husky senior Laura Hyland (Southport, England), who touched the wall second in 1:18.01. Senior Laura Ruttan (Stittsville, Ontario) and sophomore Sammi Bassman (Austin, Texas) both finished in the top five of the event. Junior Christine Pedersen (Vinterbro, Norway) swam the 100-backstroke in 1:08.13 to claim second place while sophomore Sophia King (Chesterfield, Va.) placed third in the 100-butterfly (1:09.89).
Thanks to the dominate performances, Parsons and Hu were named the Female Co-Swimmers of the Meet.
Ruttan joined freshmen Annika Grewal (Oakville, Ontario) and Jackie Van Lew (Tinton Falls, N.J) along with junior Sophie Nothnagle (Victor, N.Y.) to finish third in the 200-medley relay in a time of 2:12.31. Pedersen, Hyland and Manning teamed up with sophomore Emily Parillo (Phillipston, Mass.) to come in fourth (2:12.39). Rookie Danielle Bordes (Alpharetta, Ga.), Parsons, juniors Jordan Drake (Marietta, Ga.) and Madeleine Hoopes (Greensburg, Pa.) took second with a time of 1:55.45 in the 200-freestyle relay.
UConn’s men’s swimmers got things started off right in the relay events. Senior Jeff Magin (Brookfield, Conn.), junior James Donlevy (Lake Grove, N.Y.), senior Ryan Walsh (Monroe, N.Y.) and freshman Mark Hunter (Pietermaritzburg, South Africa) won the 200-medley relay after they finished the race in 1:50.48. Donlevy and Magin joined sophomore Daniel Krentsa (Brookfield, Conn.) and freshman Luke Martin (Richmond, Va.) for a first-place finish in the 200-freestyle relay (1:38.70). The Huskies also had quartets claim third in both relays.
In the 100-freestyle, Krentsa touched the wall in 56.29 to take second while junior Kevin Konarski (Lindenhurst, N.Y.) placed fourth with a time of 56.84. Magin completed the 100-backstroke in 1:00.41 for a second-place finish while freshman Matthew Dagenais (Middletown, Conn.) took third (1:04.03) and sophomore Walker Hill (Jacksonville, Fla.) was fourth (1:06.58).
The Huskies are back in action on Jan. 24 when they resume their dual meet schedule on the road against Seton Hall. The meet is slated for a 1 p.m. start in South Orange, N.J.