Aqua Owls

Mark Gibson

The FAU swimming and diving team heads into the 2010-2011 season feeling extremely confident that its returning group of upperclassmen will be a dominating force in the water.

On the men’s side, juniors Csaba Pek and Mikolaj Czarnecki will return in the hopes of leading FAU to a conference title. Pek made a splash his freshman year by setting a school record of 19 victories in various events. However, Pek wasn’t the only swimmer turning heads — Czarnecki set a school record for the 200-yard butterfly with a time of 1:47.40 at the Short Course National Championships in Atlanta, Ga., during the 2008-2009 season.

“I came here to swim the 200 butterfly,” said Czarnecki. “I won that event last year at conference, setting a record, and I am trying to beat that record again this year.”

For the women, senior Janelle Nassim and junior Jonna Nyback return to make an impact for the Owls. Nyback earned her spot as a member of the 200-yard medley at the Sun Belt Conference Championship meet last season. It was a relay team that set a school record with a time of 1:43.02 and placed third.

“I’m really excited about this season,” said Nyback. “I feel like we are already having a strong bond between the team.”

Aside from the Sun Belt Conference Championship in February, the team is looking forward to the Georgia Tech Invitational that falls midway through its season in November.

“We cap our fall season off with the Georgia Tech invite,” said head coach Steve Eckelkamp. “It gives us a good idea for where everyone is at. The end of November and February are our two big focal points.”

FAU will begin its season at the All Florida Invitational in Gainesville on Friday, Oct. 1.