MIAC Men's Swimming and Diving Athlete-of-the-Week
Jose Alvarez, Saint John's
North Bay Village, Fla. / Belen Jesuit
Though it was just the first appearance of the young season for the Saint John's University men's swimming and diving team, the Johnnies and junior standout Jose Alvarez (North Bay Village, Fla./Belen Jesuit) were both in midseason form. Alvarez won three individual events and also led an SJU relay team to victory as Saint John's captured first place in its season debut at the Hamline Invitational. For his performance, the MIAC sports information directors honored Alvarez Tuesday with the MIAC Men's Swimming and Diving Athlete-of-the-Week award.
Alvarez starred in his 2015 debut at the Pipers' home pool in St. Paul, with a first-place finish all four times he dove into the water. He won the 100-yard breaststroke with a time of 1:02.69, finished first in the 100-yard butterfly with a time of 53:12 and was also the winner in the 200-yard freestyle with his time of 1:49.09. Alvarez also helped the Johnnies' 200-yard medley relay team finish first with a time of 1:40.94. As a team, SJU won 11 of the 13 events for a total of 452.5 point to finish first among a four-team field of MIAC schools.
Saint John's will take this weekend off following its successful start to the 2015-16 season to gear up for its big home debut the following weekend. Alvarez and company will host the rival University of St. Thomas for a dual meet on Nov. 21 at 12 p.m. in Collegeville, Minn. After that, SJU will compete at the University of Minnesota Jean Freeman Invitational on Dec. 4-5 to conclude the 2015 portion of the schedule.
MIAC Women's Swimming and Diving Athlete-of-the-Week
Ashley Groebner, Saint Benedict
Inver Grove Heights, Minn. / Simley
The Saint Benedict women's swimming and diving team and first-year swimmer Ashley Groebner (Inver Grove Heights, Minn./Simley) certainly made a splash in their season debut. The Blazers swam to a team victory at the Hamline Invitational, with Groebner contributing an individual first-place finish and helping a relay team to a win as well in her first-ever collegiate meet. For her performance, the MIAC sports information directors honored Groebner Tuesday with the MIAC Women's Swimming and Diving Athlete-of-the-Week award.
Groebner's big debut was highlighted by the two victories, starting with her individual win in the 100-yard breaststroke. She finished the race in 1:10.44, which was just 0.2 seconds off her lifetime best and currently among the top four times in the MIAC this season. She swam a new lifetime best (32 seconds) in the 50-yard breaststroke to help Saint Ben's win the 200-yard medley relay race in 1:55.22. Groebner also added a sixth-place finish (2:28.03) in the 200-yard individual medley, and helped the 200-yard freestyle relay team finish eighth (1:53.08). Overall, the Blazers finished with 419 points to finish first in the team standings by 208 points to lead a field of six MIAC teams.
Saint Benedict has another busy week ahead, starting Tuesday afternoon at 4:30 p.m. The team will take place in the annual Ted Mullin Hour of Power, which honors the late Carleton swimmer and raises money and awareness for Sarcoma research. The Blazers are also back in action Friday with a dual meet against NCAA Division II Minnesota State-Moorhead at the Warner Palestra Pool on Saint John's campus in Collegeville, Minn. Saint Ben's dual with the Dragons is scheduled to start Friday at 5 p.m.