Although Swarthmore College may be primarily known for its academic prowess, that doesn’t necessarily mean the College’s athletic program can’t be successful either. Over the course of the 2016-2017 school year, Swarthmore athletes were able to accomplish some pretty incredible things.
Men’s Basketball won its first ever Centennial Conference Championship, after beating Dickinson in the Championship game. The team moved on to the NCAA Tournament, going as deep as the Second Round after beating the College of Staten Island.
Women’s Field Hockey was literally the smartest team in all of Division II, earning a 3.72 GPA for the Fall of 2016, as recognized by the National Field Hockey Coaches Association.
Baseball, one of the youngest teams on campus, got off to a slow start but has remained very competitive in conference play. With three games left in the regular season, the team still has a shot at earning playoff berth. The squad was tabbed to come dead-last in the polls, but with conviction has made itself a tough battle in the conference.
Women’s Soccer was amazing as usual. The squad went 7-2 in Conference play and 15-4 overall. The team qualified for the NCAA Tournament for the second year in a row, going as far as the Second Round before falling to #13 Amherst.
Men’s Lacrosse has put up a hell of a fight this season, after making it to the conference tournament for the first time in a long time. They play in the toughest conference in the country. Dickinson, Franklin and Marshall, Gettysburg, and Ursinus have all made appearance in the Top 25 this season. But the Garnet have held strong, and are still in the mix for a playoff spot.
The Softball team has immensely improved this year. After resolving roster size and health issues, the Garnet have already won the most amount of games since their 2011 season.
Men’s Swimming put together the greatest swimming performance in Swarthmore history, and walked away with a Centennial Conference Championship. The team completely rewrote the record book, breaking almost every record available to break in school history. This year’s team was unquestionably the greatest Swarthmore Men’s Swimming team of all-time.
Women’s Tennis has put together a strong performance this year, and are ranked #40 in Division III. The squad is undefeated in conference play, and are making a case for a strong run at the Centennial Conference title.
Men’s Tennis has put together just as strong of a campaign. The squad ranks #27 in the country, and is also undefeated in conference play. The team has one conference game left: Johns Hopkins. Hopkins ranks #21 in the country. After losing to Hopkins in the conference championship last year, the Garnet are hungry for revenge.
Volleyball made a strong run at the Conference Championship, but were halted by Hopkins in the championship game. The Garnet bounced back to earn the ECAC Championship.
It has been an excellent year for Swat athletics, but the year has yet to be finished. Although most teams have completed successful seasons, many teams are still in the hunt to hang a banner in Tarble Pavilion, and I hope they can all do just that.