WATERVILLE, Maine --- The Colby College swimming and diving teams open the season Saturday against Amherst College in the home opener for the Mules in the 2011-12 season.
Here's a brief look at each team:
WOMEN: Colby seniors Jess Blais, Mandy Ferguson, and Jenny Reiner are the team's captains. Blais will be counted on for points in the backstroke races, Ferguson should be strong again in the distance freestyle races, and Reiner races in both the sprinT and mid-distance freestyle races.
Laura Burns (sprint free), Sarah Hansen (sprint free), and Charlotte Veazie (back, IM) are the other three seniors on the women's team.
Colby's junior class has been solid over the past two years. Kathryn Lee (butterfly, IM) has been a top scorer and will get support from Josie Bazemore (breast, IM), Heather Cronin (distance free), Kayleigh Monahan (back, sprint free), Sarah Nalven (back), Carly Rushford (back), Leah Walpuck (butterfly), Rosie Wennberg (fly, sprint free), and Kelsey Cromie (Morristown, N.J.).
Sophomores Shannon Kooser (sprint free), Kayla Lewkowicz (sprint free), Annie Bacher (back/sprint free), Kimberly Johnson (free), and Martha Mesna (breast, diving) will need to contribute. Mesna is one of the divers along with junior Anastasia Rivard and first-years Anne Schechner and Jane Allen. Olivia Avidan (free), Annie Friedrich (free, IM), Sarah Kletzer (back, free), Stefanie Lai (fly, back), and Alexa Williams (free, back, fly) make up a sizable first-year class for head coach Tom Burton.
MEN: Mason Roberts leads an eight-man senior class for the Colby men's swimming and diving team. He was strong in the breaststroke races a year ago.
Roberts, Raymond Rieling, and Ryan Trafton will captain the Mules for Burton. Rieling will swim in the freestyle race and Trafton can go in the butterfly or freestyle.
Sam Andler (butterfly), Brian Gilligan (back, breast, fly), Tom Hurley (free, breast), and Jack Mauel (fly, free) are other seniors back for Colby. Stanley Abrams, another senior, will compete in diving.
James Hootsmans (sprint free, fly) and Adam Spierer (breast, IM) are the lone juniors on the team. John Madeira (back, IM), Anders Peterson (distance free, back), Benjamin Lewis (sprint free), Colin McLaughlin (breast, IM), Brendan Tschaen (back, free), and Quinn Ziegler (diving) are the sophomores.
After many years of having little diving, the Mules have four divers on the roster this year. First-years Javier Monterroso Montenegro and Erfan Azad are two of the four divers. Ryan Bachur (free, fly), Vincent Galea (free), Erik Holmsen (free), Shelby O'Neill (breast, IM), and Paul Wennberg (free, breast) will look to contribute right away in their first seasons at Colby.