February 4, 2012

Saint Leo Swimming Senior Day Preview

Saint Leo sophomore lacrosse player Justin Laxton contributed to this release.

SAINT LEO, Fla. –
Entering into their final meet of the regular season, the Saint Leo men's and women's swim teams will host Sunshine State Conference opponents Rollins College and Florida Tech in a Double-Dual meet, Saturday morning at the Bowman Center Pool.

This marks the 14th contest between Saint Leo and Rollins, dating back to Saint Leo's program inception back in 2005. The Rollins men hold a 9-4 series record over the Lions, while the SLU women trail 5-7-1.  In their most recent meet, the Saint Leo men composed a 135-68 score to the Tars on October 29, 2011. The women were also successful against the Tars, tallying a victory of 115-87.

The Lions will also compete in the dual conference matchup against Florida Tech, the latest addition to the SSC.  Saint Leo boasts a 1-0 series advantage over the Panthers on both the men's and women's side.  Earlier this season against the first year Florida Tech Panthers, the Saint Leo men's team posted a score of 138-39, while the women racked up a score of 140-27.

In past matchups against Rollins, the men's squad has successfully defeated the Tars in their last three competitions. While the women haven't lost either, they managed a particularly rare tie on October 30, 2010, when they posted a 130-130 final score.

"In all of my years with swimming, I have never experienced something so unreal," said Head Coach Paul Mangen in regards to the tie.  "This unusual occurrence turned heads, as swimming is a sport that lives and thrives between hundredths of a second."

The Lions will be honoring four seniors in their final home meet of 2011-12.  Derek Maddigan, Tim Olson, Luigi Zenere, and Allison Cary will take to the starting blocks for the final time on their home deck at University Pool, Saturday morning.

Maddigan, has racked up countless program records in his specialty throughout his career at Saint Leo.  As a freshman campaigning in all eight meets, Maddigan initiated his superiority, smashing the school record at the BGMC Championships with a time of 2:22.41 in the 200-Yard Breaststroke.  Sophomore year, the Wareham, Massachusetts native posted the team's best times in the 100 and 200-Yard Breaststroke events.  Junior year, he achieved program records in the 400 IM at the Turkey Invitational, and the 200 Breaststroke during the SSC Championships.

Olson has excelled as Freestyle specialist in his time on the University Pool deck.  Olson began his career as a freshman breaking multiple school records during the Sunshine State Collegiate Championships. The Land O'Lakes, Florida native also shattered the 100-Yard Freestyle record with a time of 46.67, the 200 Freestyle mark with a time of 1:44.99 and the 200 IM record with a time of 1:56.55.  Continuing his expectations, Olson had an exceptional sophomore appearance, breaking three more school individual times in the 100-Fly with a time of 51.25, the 100-Yard Backstroke clocking a phenomenal time of 54:17, and also in the 200-Yard Backstroke event with a time of 1:57.56.  At the conference championships he broke five team records in the 200 and 400 Medley Relays, as well as the 200, 400, and 800-Yard Freestyle events. 

Zenere, a native of Monaco, France, kicked off his Saint Leo career competing in all 10 events. Zenere claimed his personal best times in the 1650 Freestyle with a time of 20:37:47, as well as the 100-Yard Back in 1:06:63 at the Sunshine Stat Conference championships. Coach Mangen had nothing but compliments about Zenere's work ethic, including his efforts at refining his mechanics while significantly lowering his times in the pool. A hard-worker both in the pool and in the classroom, Zenere has earned an impressive GPA in his time at Saint Leo, and the team has truly appreciated his efforts.

Our stand alone female swimmer, Allison Cary, is an all-around program record-breaker. The Mechanic Falls, Maine native began her career in 2008 for SLU where she was a member of the 400-Yard Medley Relay squad that set a school record against conference rival Rollins with a time of 3:56:57.  As a sophomore, Cary continued her distinction as a champion, posting personal-best times in the 100 Freestyle, 100 Backstroke, and 200-Yard IM.  She topped off her concrete second year campaign with a time of 2:26:32 in the 200-Yard IM in conference competition.  Predominantly sticking to her freestyle passion, Cary managed the team's fourth-fastest time in the 50-Yard Freestyle with a mark of 26.71. An extremely dynamic student-athlete in the pool, Cary is also a super star in the classroom and has been a member of the National Collegiate Honors Society all four years of her career at Saint Leo.

The Lions will take to the starting blocks against conference rivals Florida Tech and Rollins at 11:00 a.m. at the Bowman Center Pool on the campus of Saint Leo.  After Saturday's Double-Dual showdown, the Lions gear up for Sunshine State Conference Championship competition, and set their sights on the NCAA's.  For the latest news, updates, and information on the Saint Leo men's and women's swim teams, visit SaintLeoLions.com.