52° New Rochelle, NY
The Student News Site of Iona University

The Ionian

The Student News Site of Iona University

The Ionian

The Student News Site of Iona University

The Ionian

Swimming & Diving overcomes down start with homecoming wins

Photo courtesy of ionagaels.com
Meghan Pattison was a MAAC All-Academic Team honoree during the 2022-23 season.

Iona University’s men and women’s swimming and diving teams completed action in seven events dating back to their season opener on Oct. 6.  


The men’s team kicked off the new campaign with their season opener against the New Jersey Institute of Technology.


NJIT earned 15 out of a possible 16 first place finishes at the 2 p.m. affair, which was held in the Hynes Center Pool, paving their way to a dominant 176-117 win.  


Iona freshman Kiernan Egan took home the Gaels’ lone win on the afternoon, cranking out a time of 51.42 in the 100-yard backstroke.  


Sophomore diver Dylan Riccio returned from shoulder surgery in the spring and did not miss a beat, scoring 220.95 and 231.90 in the 1-meter and 3-meter springboard events, respectively. Riccio’s numbers gave him a pair of second place finishes.  


The women’s team faced Siena College on the same day, dropping their match by a score of 181-107. 


While the Saints claimed 14 of the 16 events, Iona’s senior co-captain Megan Josephs won the 100-meter breaststroke with a 1:09.03 time and rookie Anabel Huffstutler posted a 5:20.79 to earn a comeback victory in the 500-yard freestyle.  


Head coach Nick Cavataro credited Iona’s two opponents with giving them tough competition on the day, citing finishing races as a point of interest.  


“Both NJIT and Siena raced very well today and had big performances in nearly every race,” Cavataro said. “We had strong races in spots but were not able to finish many races the way we will need to.”  


Each of Iona’s teams had 1 p.m. matchups against College of the Holy Cross on the following day, Oct. 7.  


The men’s team won their portion of the event by a convincing 170-121 margin. Overall, they snagged nine first-place finishes out of 14 and added further wins in the 200-medley and 400-freestyle relay events.  


Senior co-captain Michael Faughnan registered a strong lead-off 100-yard freestyle time of 46.27 en route to topping the 1,000 (9:53.67), 200 (1:41.79) and 500-yard (4:43.15) freestyles.  


 Egan won the 200-medley and two backstroke categories, in addition to a 400-freestyle relay victory with Faughnan, freshman Nathaniel Wales, and sophomore Mikel Palaj.  


The women, meanwhile, claimed four individual wins, but ultimately fell to the Crusaders, 178-116.  


The Gaels rounded out their home stretch to begin the season with a trio of matchups during homecoming on Oct. 14. 


During the men’s lone outing, they defeated Wagner College by a tight 114-109 window. This was highlighted by Faughnan, Egan, Wales, and Liam Pyatt combining to post a regular season school record time in the 400-free relay (3:06.87).  


The women dropped their first match to Seahawks, 128-77, but ended up earning their first victory in the following set versus Sacred Heart University.  


Junior Ashley Benkert and graduate student Tristan Urso paved the way for the women’s squad with strong respective times of 2:12.26 in the 200-yard butterfly and 10:49.70 in the 1,000-yard freestyle.  


Both of Iona’s teams are set to play in their first away games against Long Island University on Oct. 20. 

Leave a Comment
More to Discover
About the Contributor
Robert Hughes, Sports Editor

Comments (0)

All The Ionian Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *