WEST HARTFORD, Conn. - The University of Saint Joseph (USJ) men's and women's swimming & diving teams, along with sixth-year head coach Brenda Straker, have officially unveiled the Blue Jays' schedule for the upcoming 2019-20 season. Highlighting USJ's 11-event regular-season are three home meets, including the annual Blue Jay Pentathlon Invitational, held in the Bruyette Natatorium, located inside the O'Connell Center. Prior to the Blue Jays' first meet, USJBlueJays.com caught up with Straker and the team captains for a preseason update.
2019-20 WOMEN'S SWIMMING & DIVING ROSTER
The Blue Jays will kick the season off in Bristol, Rhode Island for the Roger Williams Invitational on Saturday, October 19 at 11:00 a.m. It marks the first time USJ will make the trip to Roger Williams under head coach Brenda Straker, who enters her sixth season at the helm. Sophomore Alise Martel (Harwinton, Conn.) is looking to pick up where she left off last year in the record books, while senior Leah Verrillo (Cheshire, Conn.) brings veteran leadership to the team. Both have been named captains for the women's team in 2019, announced today by Straker. Sophomore Jack Monroe (Waterbury, Conn.) will captain the men's side.
The first chance to get a look at the Blue Jays at home inside Bruyette Natatorium will be on Friday, October 25 when USJ hosts the annual Blue Jay Pentathlon. Following the Blue Jay Pentathlon, the swimming & diving team will head to UMass-Dartmouth on November 2 for the Louise Goodrum Invitational, before their first double-dual meet against Elms College of Chicopee Mass., and intrastate and Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) rival Albertus Magnus. That meet will start at 4:00 p.m and is being hosted by Elms. USJ will wrap up its November schedule with a home dual meet against GNAC foe Colby-Sawyer.
Up next is one meet in December, the Connecticut Cup, held at Wesleyan University in Middletown, Conn. The Blue Jays will then soak up some sun to start the new year on their annual week-long trip to Deerfield Beach, Florida for winter training.
January will be a busy one in the pool, with four meets following the Florida trip before the regular season comes to a close. First, a visit to Plymouth State at 3:30 p.m on the 10th, followed by the second double-dual meet of the season, this one at home against Westfield State and Western New England. Intrastate trips to Eastern Connecticut (January 21) and Trinity (January 24) will conclude a busy regular season.
USJ will look to make a statement in the GNAC Championships, held from Friday, January 31 to Sunday, February 2, at the Wellesley Sports Center in Wellesley, Mass. Those who qualify will then head to the New England Intercollegiate Swimming and Diving Association (NEISDA) Championships, held at Tootell Aquatics Center, on the campus of the University of Rhode Island.
The Blue Jays will once again make their home in the Bruyette Natatorium, hosting several events this season. Located in the O'Connell Center, the natatorium is a six-lane, 25-yard pool with a one-meter diving board. It also has an electronic scoreboard, bleachers, and handicap access. Adjacent to the pool are men's and women's locker rooms, as well as the swim team coach/aquatics director office.
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