Westford swimmer Emily Blatt makes splash at Bentley – Lowell Sun

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A breaststroke specialist at Bentley University, Emily Blatt currently leads the Northeast 10 Conference in the in both the 50-yard backstroke (30.88) and 200-yard backstroke (2:27.79). She’s also ranked second in the 100-yard backstroke (1:06.96), establishing herself as one of the premiere swimmers to watch in the NE-10. Courtesy photo Bentley Athletics.

Emily Blatt is proving to be a swimmer with tremendous depth, and patience.

Whether its competing in the breaststroke or serving as a key cog on the relay team, the Westford native and Bentley University sophomore continues to make waves.

After sitting out her entire freshman season due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Blatt has been making up for lost time. The Westford Academy graduate is currently leading the Northeast 10 Conference in both the 50-yard backstroke (30.88) and 200-yard backstroke (2:27.79). She’s also ranked second in the 100-yard backstroke (1:06.96), establishing herself as one of the premiere swimmers to watch in the NE-10.

She has also reveled in the relay. After their outstanding performance at the WPI Gompei Invitational over the weekend, Blatt and the Bentley University Women’s 400 Medley Relay Team were named the NE-10 Conference Women’s Relay Team of the Week, Dec. 7. The Bentley quartet, which also featured senior Lucy Slowe, freshman Jordan Nuzback and junior Kate Galvin, finished third (3:58.78), putting the Falcons just 1.58 seconds behind first-place finisher Bryant. It was their best finish in the conference this season by 2.37 seconds.

“It feels spectacular,” said Blatt, 20, who previously garnered two other Relay of the Week awards (Oct. 26, Nov. 2), as well as NE-10 Rookie of the Week honors (Nov. 2) this season. “It feels good to get acknowledged. It’s been weird (dealing) with COVID. I haven’t been able to train for a year, but getting back into racing is really fun.”

Blatt was consistently solid in the three-day Gompei tourney, which ran from Dec. 3-5. She opened the Invitational finishing fourth in the 200-breaststroke, clocking in at 2:28.10. She also helped the Falcons finish fifth in the 200-medley relay (1:49.03).

Turned out she was just getting warmed up. Blatt led Bentley during day two, securing second in the 100-yard breaststroke (1:07.15). She reached the wall 1.26 seconds behind a familiar foe, first place finisher Katherine Pawlak of WPI.

“She was actually my high school teammate at Westford Academy,” Blatt said. “That was kind of cool to race with her again.”

Blatt was also part of the Falcons 400-medley relay that took third (3:58.78). The New England all-star capped the Invitational taking third in the 50-breaststroke (30.88).

Overall, Bentley finished sixth out of nine teams with 4,101.5 combined points.

“I think we have a great team,” said Blatt. “We’re super close and our coach gives us great practices.”

A competitive swimmer since the age of 8, Blatt first took the plunge at Westford Swimming and Tennis Club. She started year-round training by the age of 10, working with the Southern New England Fins and Patriots Swim Club, before joining Westford Academy her freshman year.

A team captain, Blatt helped guide the Grey Ghosts to four straight MIAA Division 1 State Championships, while finishing as runner-up in the 100-breaststroke, before graduating in 2020.

“I’ve been swimming so long that its natural to me,” said Blatt. “The pool has always felt like home. It’s a relaxing place that I can always get out any stresses from the day. It’s also the place I’ve met all my friends. My swim team is my second family.”

One of a bumper crop of blue-chip prospects, Blatt was looking forward to her freshman year at Bentley, before the COVID-19 Pandemic dealt a crushing blow. The NE-10 opted to cancel all winter sports for the season.

“So we didn’t swim,” said Blatt. “They had optional practices, but with the lockdowns and shutdowns, I probably swam straight for only 10 days. We had one scrimmage Easter weekend against Brandeis.”

Going as long as three months out of the pool, Blatt felt like a fish out of water.

“It was so challenging,” said Blatt. “I think for any swimmer around the pandemic, you’re wondering what you’re training for? You try to get yourself motivated. Knowing that I would have a season next year (helped). I wanted to train for that, but it was definitely challenging and mentally tough.”

Despite the long layoff, Blatt has more than earned her keep. She was honored with the NE-10 Rookie of the Week and Relay Team of the Week award, Nov. 3, for her heroics against Le Moyne in a 157-121 win, Oct. 31. It was the team’s first home meet in the Dana Center pool since January 2020.

Blatt was a double winner against Le Moyne sweeping the breaststroke in the 100 (1:10.84) and a conference season-best in the 200 (2:32.46). She was also second in the 200 individual medley (2:22.02) and part of the Falcons winning 200 medley relay (1:52.71).

Currently enjoying a brief break in the action, Blatt is primed for some winter training this month, before returning to campus after Christmas break for double-sessions. Bentley has four meets left on the schedule, culminating with its championship meet at WPI the first week of February.

She likes her team’s chances.

“It looks really good,” said Blatt. “Both the men’s and women’s teams are projected to finish second in the NE 10 Conference. We’re excited to get back in the pool and start racing again.”

And Bentley can certainly count on Emily Blatt to make a splash when she does.

Bentley University sophomore Emily Blatt has been a competitive swimmer since the age of 8. She first took the plunge at Westford Swimming and Tennis Club, swimming year-round by the age of 10, joining the Southern New England Fins and Patriots Swim Club, before joining Westford Academy her freshman year. Courtesy photo Bentley Athletics
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