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Men's Swim & Dive opens MAAC Championships Wednesday night

Photo by: Dave Silverman
Photo by: Dave Silverman

2016 MAAC Championship Headquarters

SMITHFIELD, R.I. – Looking to build on a sixth-place finish from a year ago, the Bryant University men's swimming and diving team heads to Buffalo, N.Y., this week to compete in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference Championships.

The 2016 MAAC Swim & Dive Championships will once again be hosted at Erie Community College and are set to begin on Wednesday, Feb. 10. The meet will continue through Saturday with morning and afternoon sessions on each day.

Bryant posted 339.5 points last season but return a bevy of talent this year. Included in that group is reigning MAAC Most Outstanding Performer Ben Schulte (Tumon, Guam). Schulte took the conference by storm last year, winning the 100 and 200 breast and the 200 IM. He hit NCAA "B" cut times in the 100 breast and 200 IM and set school records in all three events.

This year, Schulte enters the championships as a top three seed in all three events once again. He is third in the 200 IM, second in the 100 breast and third in the 200 breast. Behind Schulte, the Bulldogs have a chance for a strong performance in the breast events. Freshman Tavish Boyle (Springfield, N.J.) is fifth in the 100 and 200 breast events, while George Sommerville (Pittsfield, Mass.) is 16th in the 100 breast and Joshua Bjornberg (Wallingford, Conn.) is 11th in the 200 breast.

Sophomore Colin Curtin (Wethersfield, Conn.) also enters the championship meet with a chance to score big. He enters as the top seed in the 100 back and the ninth seed in the 200 back. Benon Boyadjian (Middlebury, Conn.) is seeded 12th in the 100 back and Charlie Broe (New Windsor, N.Y.) is seeded 15th in the 200 back.

It could be a special meet for the freshman Broe as he is seeded in the top 20 in four different individual events. In addition to the 200 back, Broe is seeded 18th in the 500 free, 10th in the 1000 free and 15th in the 1650 free.

Other top seeded Bulldogs this week include Curtin (17th, 500 free), Boris Paraliticci (Saunderstown, R.I.) (16th, 50 free), Oliver French (Nashua, N.H.) (13th, 1000 free) and Shane Vyskocil (Parsippany, N.J.) (13th, 400 IM).

On the board, freshman Kevin Sullivan (East Lyme, Conn.) enters the week seeded 10th in the 3 meter dive and 12th in the 1 meter. Classmate Ryan Sheehy (West Newbury, Mass.) is seeded 12th in the 3 meter and 14th in the 1 meter.

The championship meet begins on Wednesday night at 6:00 p.m. with the 200 medley and 800 free relays.