This year, Mount Athletics welcomes men’s swimming and women’s diving to the aquatics program. The swim and dive team is led by head coach Neil Yost, who has been in charge of the program since the women’s swim team was created in 2005. Yost will be assisted by coaches Zander Taylor, former assistant coach at Alfred University, and Kristie Langford, a stand-out swimmer and recent graduate of University of Maryland Baltimore County.
The team has a total of 38 members: 11 men, 24 women, and three divers. Yost has recruited swimmers from all over the country, including Idaho and California, as well as internationally, including Australia and Canada.
Yost believes that this program will benefit Mount Athletics by bringing in even more athletes who strive for success. The group of men he has recruited will bring great grades along with high work ethics and a strong sense of determination. Adding the men’s team, and increasing the size of the program in general, will help draw even more high-achieving athletes to The Mount in coming years.
This season, Yost says that he’s looking forward to having the opportunity to compete both a men’s and women’s swim team. The team features swimmers of various skill levels and specialties, so the racing and competition will be exciting to watch. He is also eager to have the opportunity to watch diving this season as well.
The goal for this season is to focus on creating athletes of high academic standards, more specifically having the team achieve the Academic All-American status once again. Aside from creating scholarly athletes, Yost would also like to see the women’s team move up a spot at the Northeast Conference (NEC) meet. The team placed sixth last season after a 4-4 record.
In the coming years, Yost hopes to continue to grow the program. He would like to make the men’s team a full squad, which would mean increasing the size to 18-20 swimmers. Another goal is to continue to be competitive within the NEC and place higher in the conference championship meet. Aside from that, Yost hopes that the team will gain a competitive presence beyond just the NEC.
Men’s swimming and women’s diving will continue to diversify The Mount and draw in high-achieving and driven students. The team will kick off their season at home on Oct. 8 against Manhattan College and the Virginia Military Institute. Best of luck in the upcoming season. Go Mount Swim and Dive!