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UNC swimming and diving honors seniors before victories over Duke

As the crowd and the teams prepared for the final home meet against Duke — a meet the men’s and women’s teams won by scores of 176-90 and 175-133, respectively — they heard something strange: the sound of “God Save the Queen” ringing through Koury Natatorium.

Dave Lohse, the spokesman for the swimming and diving teams, was singing the British national anthem in honor of senior Nick Lowe, who is from London, England.

Singing national anthems for foreign athletes on their Senior Night is a tradition Lohse has carried on for almost a decade.

“It’s just a fun thing to do and I love doing it and I love singing,” Lohse said.

Since starting the tradition in 2006, Lohse has sung the national anthems from France, Canada, Malaysia and many others. He said he always memorizes them and sings them in their native languages.

“The one national anthem I am completely incapable of singing is the United States of America,” he said. “I cannot sing it. I cannot hit the notes. I have a baritone voice, but I sing a heck of a great La Marseillaise.’”

Lohse said he is looking forward to the end of the men’s lacrosse season when he gets to sing “O Canada,” which he considers his specialty.

Along with Lowe, the men’s side celebrated seven other seniors, while the women’s side celebrated three.

“We hate to see seniors go, but that’s really the whole idea,” Coach Rich DeSelm said. “They’re supposed to come and graduate and go on to the next part of their life. Every year we’re indebted to the senior class. You’ve got to love their leadership.”

Senior Danielle Siverling celebrated her Senior Night by winning the 200-yard freestyle with a time of 1:49.18.

Siverling said the night was emotional for all of the seniors because all of the time the team has spent together over the past three seasons.

“Honestly I think my favorite memories here have been watching other people have great races,” Siverling said. “It’s been really cool to watch my teammates do that kind of stuff.”

One of those teammates was fellow senior Patrick Myers, who won the 200-yard backstroke with a time of 1:47.78.

“It’s just like a huge family here and throughout the course of my four years these guys are my best friends,” Myers said.

“They’re going to be friends for life and just knowing that this is going to be the last time I’m going to be racing in this pool with a bunch of them is pretty emotional for me.”

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