Women's Swimming Finishes Fourth at ACC Championships
Feb. 22, 2014
GREENSBORO, N.C. – The No. 22 NC State women’s swimming & diving team claimed the silver medal in the 400 freestyle relay, as competition in the Women’s ACC Championships concluded Saturday evening at the Greensboro Aquatic Center.
Throughout the week, State saw 15 school records fall, including the school record in each of the five relays contested throughout the week.
“That was a very fun night for the ladies,” said head coach Braden Holloway. “The energy on deck kept building with every swim. I have not seen our women fight and create momentum like they did in our session tonight. I’m very excited for them and am happy for them moving up a spot from last year.”
Virginia (1433) finished first overall, followed by North Carolina (1205), Florida State (972), NC State (950) and Virginia Tech (914.5).
“I am proud of the hard work that those ladies put in this entire season,” Holloway said. “I am proud of our staff for getting the ladies ready to go and having a great team effort.”
Rachel Muller kicked things off in the finals portion of the day by swimming the 1650 freestyle in 16:33.10 to finish ninth overall, while Kristin Connors finished the mile in 16:50.99 to finish 13th overall.
Junior Hannah Freyman was able to break the program record two times throughout the day in the 200 backstroke. Freyman clocked a time of 1:55.29 in the morning preliminaries to better the previous school record of 1:56.59, before she bettered her time in the ‘A’ final with a time of 1:55.21. She finished fourth overall in the event.
“Hannah [Freyman] really rose to the occasion in the 200 back tonight by breaking the school record in the morning and at night,” Holloway stated.
State also posted strong results in the ‘B’ final of the 200 back, as Alexia Zevnik finished first in the heat and ninth overall with a time of 1:55.71 and Kaitlin Mills finished second in the heat and 10th overall with a 1:56.54 clocking. In addition, Nicole Haynes finished 16th overall with a time of 1:58.23.
Freshmen Natalie Labonge and Lotta Nevalainen each competed in the ‘A’ final of the 100 freestyle for the Pack. Labonge finished fifth overall with a time of 49.28, while Nevalainen tapped the wall in 49.33 to finish sixth overall. Riki Bonnema and Lauren Poli also competed in the evening finals session, as Bonnema (49.44) finished 11th overall and Poli placed 15th.
Senior Kelsey Liu broke her own school record in the 200 breaststroke with a finals time of 2:14.09 to finish 18th overall. She bettered her mark of 2:14.18 set last season. Kayla Brumbaum was State’s top finisher in the event, as she finished 12th overall with a time of 2:14.46. Hayley Tomlinson also competed in the finals for the Pack, as she (2:16.92) finished 23rd overall.
“Kelsey [Liu] breaking her own school record in the last 200 breast of her career was huge for us,” Holloway said.
In the 200 butterfly, Lydia Jones finished 10th overall with a clocking of 1:58.80 to eclipse the previous school record of 1:59.52. Anne Leuthold recorded a time of 1:59.30 to finish 17th overall. Both times meet the required time standard for an NCAA ‘B’ cut.
“Lydia Jones had a great 200 fly for us,” Holloway said. “She made big adjustments from the morning.”
The Pack concluded the ACC Championships by claiming the silver medal in the 400 freestyle relay. The quartet of Labonge, Zevnik, Nevalainen and Bonnema swam the event in a school record time of 3:14.96. The time bests the previous school record of 3:18.59, as the quartet earned an NCAA ‘A’ cut with the performance. In addition, Labonge eclipsed the previous school record of 48.99 in the 100 freestyle with a lead off split of 48.93 in the event.
“The last relay was special,” Holloway said. “We dropped four seconds off our school record. We had three freshmen and a sophomore in that relay. Natalie [Labonge} also broke the school record in the town she grew up in with her lead off.”
Up next, the Wolfpack men’s swimmers will compete in the ACC Championships from Feb. 26-March 1.