After a slow start to the season, the Chargers picked up the pace this weekend by tal­lying  two vic­tories, putting them at 3 – 2 overall.

Hillsdale blew Malone Uni­versity out of the water 190 – 19 and solidly defeated Findlay 135 – 105.  Hillsdale’s vic­tories came against two GLIAC oppo­nents at  home on Sat­urday, Nov. 6.

“The meet this weekend really boosted our con­fi­dence,” junior Alison Johnson said. “It was nice to get a couple of vic­tories, and it was really a good meet for everybody.”

Upper­classmen swimmers pro­pelled the Chargers to victory. Senior Sarah Leitner had a stellar per­for­mance. She started off by indi­vid­ually winning the 50-yard free, and then with junior Becca Remmes, led the Chargers to a 1 – 2 placing in the 200-yard back­stroke. Leitner fin­ished the meet by anchoring Hillsdale’s vic­to­rious 400-yard freestyle relay, which handily defeated Findlay by a margin of seven seconds.

Sophomore Chargers Rachel Kurtz and Jordan Rucinski took first place in the 100-yard free in 53.66 and Rucinski the 500-yard free in 5:24.1, respec­tively.

In addition to the strong per­for­mances by veteran swimmers, Hillsdale ben­e­fitted from impressive per­for­mances by its promising freshman class.

Freshman Sarah Rinaldi kept her win-streak alive. She earned her third indi­vidual victory in three meets. Rinaldi, in addition to winning the 200-yard IM, took second place in the 200-yard breast­stroke by only one second.

Fol­lowing Rucinski’s lead, freshmen Jen­nifer Wheeler and Hannah Leitner placed second and third, respec­tively, in the 500-yard free and capped off the one-two-three Charger sweep of the event.

Coach Kurt Kirner was pleased with the results.

“Findlay is a close rival of ours, so beating them helps our con­fi­dence,” Kirner said.  “We relied on our depth to over­power the other teams’ talent base.”

The Chargers’ next match-up comes against Olivet and Northern Ohio at home, Nov. 9. Yet the Chargers are looking ahead.

“We’ll back off [of our training] a little bit as we prepare for our Calvin meet, where we’ll hope to swim qual­i­fying times for GLIACS,” Kirner said.

Before the Calvin Invite, which is a 3 day event beginning Nov. 29, the women will taper, or reduce their training volume in hopes of max­i­mizing per­for­mance. The team will resume intense training as usual until the GLIAC con­ference cham­pi­onships.

As for the upcoming com­pe­tition this Friday the team plans to get cre­ative.

“Since we are facing smaller DIII oppo­nents, it will provide an oppor­tunity for the girls to exper­iment in events that they nor­mally don’t have the chance to swim,” Kirner said.