By CHRIS MARKHAM
The University of Mary Washington men’s and women’s swim teams forfeited their first meets of the year after members of the teams participated in a hazing event for the incoming freshmen, according to anonymous sources.
The source’s claims were confirmed by UMW director of athletics Ken Tyler, who enforced the punishment and has met with both teams.
According to Tyler, Fredericksburg police responded to a noise violation at an off-campus house earlier this month. The police made Tyler and head coach Abby Brethauer aware of the situation in which they saw underage members of the swim teams consuming alcohol.
According to sources, the men’s and women’s teams were not together the night of the alleged hazing, rather at separate off-campus residences. Members of the team and coach Brethauer declined comment on the issue. However, according to Tyler, the event was “largely a freshman welcome tradition/party” but is unaware as to how long the tradition has been in place. Tyler said that the tradition has “ended permanently” and that “the matter is closed and we are moving forward.”
The meet that the teams will be forfeiting is against Washington & Lee University, one of UMW’s biggest rivals. The women’s swim team is coming off of their 26th consecutive Capital Athletic Conference championship while the men’s team is coming off of their 16th straight championship and 22nd overall.