UIndy Men’s and Women’s Swim and Dive Teams Take on GLVC with Great Success

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The University of Indianapolis Men’s and Women’s Swim and Dive teams competed at the Great Lakes Valley Conference Tournament in Evansville, according to UIndy Athletics. After a week-long competition beginning Feb. 6, the teams’ performances ranked well, earning the title of GLVC Conference Champions for the men’s team and a close runner-up for the women’s team. The teams went against a combined total of 21 teams, all vying for the title of champion. According to the Head Coach for both the Men’s and Women’s Swim and Dive teams Brett Noble, this was the biggest team meet of the year.

“We’re able to bring the whole group, so we had 84 there competing: swimmers and divers, men and women,” Noble said. “For most of the team, it serves as the championship meet and the best performance of the year, what all of the training of the year comes down to. And so there’s a lot of pressure in that, of course, but definitely a lot of opportunity. We swam well, we dove well, we performed well.”

Noble said the teams competed and trained towards improvement throughout the entire season, culminating in the competition for the GLVC title. The teams have very different needs based on their events, so they train for such with their teammates, he said.

“…We train very specifically,” Noble said. “You have distance swimmers and sprinters and divers and breaststrokers. …You have groups that train within the men’s and women’s teams daily together. And then those compete for the same event. … So you form camaraderie within those individual groups and that’s among men and women.”

Within the team, there is a wide variety of athletes, according to Noble, with five first-years to graduate students all competing with and against each other. As the team recruits new people every year, the team chemistry changes, but the coaching team is committed to allowing each swimmer and diver to perform their best.

“Every year, every team has a little bit of a different dynamic, but, ultimately, we’re geared towards trying to give everyone the opportunity to perform the best they’re able to. And everyone brings a lot of different value there, so they’re able to pull from each other and push each other, motivate each other for sure,” Noble said.

First-year UIndy swimmer Celina Schmidt swimming the breaststroke during the GLVC Tournament. Schmidt earned a gold medal in the 200-meter breaststroke, bronze in 800-meter relay, silver in 400-meter medley, and 4th place in the 100-meter breaststroke.
Photo contributed by UIndy Athletics

Senior student and first-year swimmer Celina Schmidt competed at the GLVC Tournament and walked away with a gold medal in the 200-meter breaststroke along with other notable awards, such as a silver and bronze medal in the relays she competed in, according to UIndy Athletics. She said the entire team being there and cheering for each other motivated her to perform the best she could.

“Especially this week, it was like I swam for the team, and I think this is why I was so good on the 200 and on the other events too,” Schmidt said. “Also, when you swim on the relay, it’s kind of the same. It’s a team event, and you can do even more than you expect from yourself and you can even achieve faster times.”

Schmidt said she appreciates the motivation and support the team gives her, especially after she was sick at the beginning of the tournament. Despite the fact that swim and dive tends to be an individual sport, she appreciates the team dynamics and the kindness they offered during the tournament, citing a special chant that the team would yell for each other. The chant can be heard on the UIndy Swim and Dive ‘X’ account where they cheered “Oh go UIndy, oh go UIndy!”

“The moment I touched the wall and the 200 breast, I think that was my favorite moment because it was just a big relief for me,” Schmidt said. “Just to win and to see that I’m still able to swim good after all I’ve been through this week. That was just good for my mind. It was also good to look forward to nationals and what’s coming for me.”

Beyond the team motivating each other, the competition and the urge to qualify for nationals helps push the team to perform their best, according to Noble. While this was the last meet and epitome of what they trained for, Noble said some of the swimmers and divers, like Schmidt and junior Cedric Buessing, have qualified for the NCAA Championships. According to Noble, those that did not yet qualify for the finals participated in the UIndy Last Chance Meet on Feb. 16. The meet is their final shot at securing a spot in the NCAA DII Championships on March 12.

For Schmidt, she said she is putting a majority of her focus into the NCAA Championship that she will be competing in. Knowing her abilities, she hopes that she can show her capabilities when the time comes, Schmidt said.

“I’m not looking at next year,” Schmidt said. “I’m just more looking forward to nationals and seeing what I can do and hope for new [personal bests], maybe a new school record.”

Schmidt said that she has a supportive and caring team.. Regardless of what she felt and went through early into the competition, she found it easy to push through for her team, she said.

“I think a big takeaway is that you can achieve a lot even if you go through, say, issues or problems, and it’s nice to see that people have your back,” Schmidt said. “That’s a big thing. And I think even if it’s an individual sport like this, GLVC is kind of like a team event. So it doesn’t matter how you feel, you just go through it for the team and try to do your best.”

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