Hepburn earns rookie of the week honors

Bahamian collegiate swimmer Jamilah Hepburn earned the Northeast-10 (NE10) Conference Rookie of the Week honor for women’s swimming and diving earlier this week.

This is the first time the Stonehill College Skyhawks freshman earned the honor, and she did it for her performances at the swim meets at Bridgewater State University last week Wednesday and Assumption University on Saturday.

Hepburn posted the second-best time in the NE10 Conference for the 100-yard breaststroke this season to highlight three top two finishes in her six individual swims over two events for Stonehill last week. She set the program record in the 100-yard breaststroke, swimming 1:09.

“I’m quite excited about receiving it and very grateful. I just try to put in 100 percent in every practice and in every meet,” Hepburn said.

She clocked the second-best time in the conference of 1:09 to finish second in the 100-yard breaststroke last week Wednesday, swimming splits of 32.39 seconds and 36.61 seconds. Winning that race was Wheaton College’s Meghan Dickinson with a time of 1:08.57. Hepburn’s teammate, Morgan Gangi, placed third after clocking 1:13.36.

Hepburn helped her school split the tri-meet on Wednesday. They won 120-98 against Bridgewater but lost to Wheaton 149-65.

On Saturday, Hepburn finished with a pair of second-place finishes as they went up against an NE10 Conference opponent. She secured those second-place finishes in the 100-yard breast and the 200-yard breast events.

In the 100-yard breast, Hepburn swam 1:12.32. She finished second behind Assumption’s Sophia Lumino who touched the wall in 1:08.90. Gangi was third once again when she posted a time of 1:13.57.

The 18-year-old’s time in the 200-yard breaststroke was 2:39.12. Assumption’s Elise Keister won that event after swimming 2:38.41. Gangi was third when she clocked 2:42.01.

Hepburn also finished sixth in the 50-yard freestyle when she swam 27.72 seconds. The Skyhawks won the dual meet, 134-100.

The CARIFTA swimmer is looking to get comfortable at the collegiate level swimming this season. So far, she has performed well, recording three event wins, eight top three finishes and 10 top five’s in her 11 individual swims.

“This season has been fantastic since these are our first in-person meets in team history. My goals for this season were to build a foundation, to get accustomed to college level swimming, and see how best I can improve moving forward,” Hepburn said.

She currently ranks second on the team for the 50-yard freestyle (27.17 seconds), while ranking first on the team in all three breaststroke distances, ranking third in the NE10 Conference at 50 yards (32.29), second in the 100 (1:09) and sixth in the 200 (2:35.69).

The Mako Aquatics Club swimmer and the Skyhawks who have a 4-3 win/loss record on the season will return to action on Friday, December 3 when they compete in the Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) Winter Championship at the Nassau County Aquatic Center in East Meadow, New York. That meet will be held next week Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Hepburn said she is looking forward to that meet.

“Right now, I’m preparing myself by staying hydrated, eating well, and getting a lot of rest over the Thanksgiving break. For the meet, I hope to make finals and drop times in all my events,” Hepburn said.

Hepburn said her biggest adjustment was moving far away from her family and friends. She said she is looking forward to the Christmas holiday break.

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Simba French

Simba joined The Nassau Guardian in 2012 as a technical producer for Guardian Radio 96.9 FM. He joined the Editorial Department as a sports reporter in 2018. Simba has covered a wide range of sports stories, including the 2018 CARIFTA in Nassau, Bahamas. Education: College of the Bahamas, BA Media Journalism

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