Maggie Rosenbaum, one of the nation’s best backstroke swimmers, is wrapping up her senior year at Hamilton.
Maggie Rosenbaum, one of the nation’s best backstroke swimmers, is wrapping up her senior year at Hamilton. (Courtesy photo / Michael P. Doherty, Hamilton College)

It's a big weekend for Maggie Rosenbaum this weekend at Williams College, but she would like it not to be her last weekend of swimming.

Rosenbaum, the former Monument Mountain swim standout, competed in her first NESCAC swim championship as a freshman at Williams College. Now, as a Hamilton College senior, she'll make one last weekend visit to the Samuelson-Muir Pool in Williamstown.

"It is, especially because I swam there as a freshman, it's definitely bringing my college career full circle," said Rosenbaum. "It's a little bit easier for my parents to get up there [from Alford], so that makes it a little nicer."

Rosenbaum's career at Hamilton has been one for the record books. She holds by herself or with teammates 11 Hamilton swim records. She has won NCAA Division III championships in the 100 backstroke in 2011 and 2012, and has registered six All-America mentions in her three years at Hamilton.

"It's the natural progression for a college athlete," said Hamilton head coach T.J. Davis. "I don't think anybody expects anything less than our students to graduate and move on.

"This is sort of their life and this is their time to be an athlete. We're all excited about what's ahead. We're sad that it's coming to an end. It's been such a great run."

Rosenbaum said that it's hard to believe that she'll swim in her final NESCAC meet this weekend.

"[Monument coach] Jill [Svirida] texted me [Tuesday] and wished me luck at NESCACs," said Rosenbaum. "It does seem very strange to not be going to Western Mass. and states.

"In a way, it seems a lot longer than four years, and then in another sense it's gone by with the wink of an eye."

Rosenbaum was the NESCAC Swimmer of the Meet as a sophomore and as a junior, and will try to make it three straight this weekend.

The Samuelson-Muir Pool has been a good place to visit for Rosenbaum, who has pool records in all three of the backstroke events she swims. Rosenbaum holds a NESCAC and NESCAC meet record along with the pool record in the 50, a pool and meet record in the 100 back and a pool record in the 200 back.

"I'm very pleased with how these four years have gone," she said. "It's a lot of hours in the pool and a lot of time with a lot of great people."

On Friday night, Rosenbaum had the fastest time in a preliminary heat of the 50 backstroke. Her time of 26.26 seconds was almost a second and a half faster than her seed time.

"We sort of knew what we were getting a little bit out of the gate, especially with the fact that Whitney was here, as a very good athlete for four years here at Hamilton and was her older sister," said the Hamilton coach. "I sort of knew the work ethic I was getting and the family I was getting. Certainly the talent was there.

"I don't know that I anticipated the success or the level of success or rewriting the record board at Hamilton or the influence she's had on teammates in relays. Those were things I had expectations for, but they blew me away."

Rosenbaum is majoring in comparative literature and wants to teach and coach when she graduates from Hamilton in the spring. First, though, there is some more competition ahead.

After the NESCAC meet this weekend, the NCAA Division III meet is on the horizon. Another national championship would be a nice way to cap things off.

"I'm hoping to drop times but I was dealing with a bit of a shoulder strain earlier in the season," she said. "Just to be going close to in-season best times is really encouraging at this point.

"I hope to drop a little bit of time. Even if I don't, it's been a great run."