Written by Matt Jones, Class of 2014 and H-SC Swimming team member.
HAMPDEN-SYDNEY, VA - In its first full season, the Hampden-Sydney Swim team has swam to four team wins and numerous individual first place finishes. Led by senior captains Ke Shang (Hampden-Sydney, VA) and John Bishop (Guntersville, AL/Randolph School), the young program looks to cap off their successful inaugural campaign with an ODAC win.
The Tigers will battle their season-long rival, Greensboro College, this weekend for what the swimmers consider to be the equivalent of a Championship meet. Shang hopes to end his collegiate career with a first place result in the ODAC meet.
Shang commented on what a win this weekend would mean to him: "When I helped found this program a year ago, I had no expectation that we would be competing for a first place result in the ODAC in only our first full year." The Tigers' competitiveness has not gone unnoticed; earlier in the season the swim team received an invitation to compete at the Randolph-Macon Invitational in Richmond. They competed against many programs from around the region including Washington & Lee, who ranks nationally among NCAA Division III swim programs.
Upon arriving back to campus after winter break the program was greeted with the recently renovated Leggett Pool. The Board of Trustees and the Athletic Department showed their support of the program by funding the renovations.
Athletic Director Richard Epperson spoke highly of the team, stating: "The performance of the men's swimming program at Hampden-Sydney has exceeded expectations for their first year. Coach Prengaman and the team have built a solid foundation around a talented group of truly committed student athletes. With the wonderful renovations at Leggett Pool, we are convinced that we will continue to attract talented swimmers to Hampden-Sydney."
Coach Betsy Prengaman also added that "The renovations to the pool are a huge step in the development of our swim program. The much needed facelift to the aquatic center is also a great improvement, and we hope that it will result in more members of the Hampden-Sydney community taking advantage of our facilities at Tiger Rec."
Stay tuned over the weekend for updates on the Tigers' performance in Greensboro. The Tigers will be competing Friday through Sunday at the Greensboro Aquatic Center.