Panthers Tuning Up For Conference Swim Championships

By  //  January 8, 2013

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Freshman Zac Paryzek Dazzles For FIT

Freshman Zac Paryzek was a top swimmer for Florida Tech against Mount Union on Sunday, earning victories in the 200 yard and 500 yard men’s freestyle races. (Image courtesy of Florida Tech/Amanda Stratford)

BREVARD COUNTY • MELBOURNE, FLORIDA – Holding a seven-point lead heading into the final race of the day, Florida Tech’s women’s swim team broke a school record in the 200 yard freestyle relay, but were unable to touch the wall first, dropping a heartbreaking two-point loss to Mount Union College Sunday afternoon at the Panther Aquatic Center.

The men’s team, however, was more fortunate, coasting to a 138-67 victory over the Raiders.

Both teams kicked things off with victories to open the meet in the 200 yard medley relay. Shelby Pearce, Schelli Linz, Liana Soileau and Kristen Jones took home the win for the women’s side in a time of 1:56.76.

The men’s squad was just as successful as Kaikea Nakachi, Brian Dumont, Steven Moodie and Trevor Eastin combined to earn the victory in 1:40.81.

The men’s team would go on to win nine of 11 events on the day, including setting a pair of school records. Zac Paryzek earned both of those in the 500 and 1000 yard freestyle races.

The freshman earned victories in both, swimming the two races in times of 4:50.68 and 9:58.02, respectively. His time in the 1000 freestyle was the first in school history to break the 10-minute mark.

Other key victories for the men came in the 100 yard freestyle, where Moodie out-touched his opponent by less than a half-second, and the 100 yard breaststroke, where Dumont, Ross Donatelli and Ben Hoerlein finished in the top three spots.

The women’s side was nearly as successful, earning victories in seven of 11 races. The squad was, unfortunately, unable to overcome the depth of a Mount Union team which has yet to lose a dual meet this season. The Panthers broke a pair of records on the day, including the 200 freestyle relay. The combination of Carmen Montalvo, Daphne Laino, Laura Holty and Madison Hart registered a time of 1:48.73 to grab the record.

Jeni Ritter is the head swimming coach for Florida Tech. (Image courtesy Florida Tech)

Linz added an individual record in the 100 yard breaststroke. The freshman narrowly reached the wall first, defeating her opponent by four hundredths of a second at 1:10.59.

“Today’s meet was a great way to finish off our winter training,” head coach Jeni Ritter said. “The team has competed three meets this week as well as a heavy training week. The rest of the season will move fairly quickly, and I know the team is excited for the conference championship in mid-February.”

On Saturday, Florida Tech men’s and women’s swim teams closed out a one-week training trip to South Florida at the FIU Sprint Invitational. The men’s team scored 197 points to grab a fourth place finish, while the women’s squad scored 50.5 to finish fifth.

The teams competed against several NCAA Division I programs in the FIU Sprint Invitational, as Texas Christian University, Eastern Michigan and Florida International swam among other stiff competition. FIU earned the overall victory on the women’s side, while TCU took home the title for the men.

FIT swimmers will return to action this Saturday at the Panther Aquatic Center by facing off against Saint Leo in the final home meet of the season at noon. A week later, the Panthers will head to Winter Park for the team’s final meet before the Sunshine State Conference Championships.