One individual event national title and another national crown in a relay event highlighted Thursday’s action by NCAC student-athlete at the 2018 NCAA Swimming & Diving Championships. Through 20 total events at the IU Natatorium in Indianapolis, Indiana, NCAC athletes have combined for two individual event national titles, one national title in a relay event, 45 total Top-8 All-American performances and 23 additional Honorable-Mention All-American efforts. VIDEO RECAP - PHOTOS
With 10 men’s events in the books, Denison holds a comfortable lead in the team standings with 325.5 total points, followed by Emory in second (200), Kenyon in third (186), Johns Hopkins in fourth (166) and MIT in fifth with 118 total points.
On the women’s side, Emory continued to build upon its lead with 318 total points, followed by Williams in second (254), Kenyon in third (243), Denison in fourth (203) and Johns Hopkins in fifth with 149 points.
Men's 200 Freestyle Relay
In the first event on Thursday night, the men’s 200 free relay, the Kenyon Lords finished fifth overall in the championship heat with a time of 1:20.94, while Denison also climbed the All-American podium in seventh with a time of 1:21.20. KC’s quartet included sophomore Reilly Shields (Chicago, IL/St. Ignatius), sophomore Tommy Weiss (St. Paul, MN/St. Thomas Acad.), senior Matthew Cooper (Charlotte, NC/South Mecklenberg) and freshman David Fitch (Coway, MA/Williston Northampton), while the Denison team included sophomore Kymani Senior (White Plains, NY/Woodlands), junior Kenny Fox (Juneau, AK/Thunder Mountain), junior Brett Weicht (Edina, MN/Edina) and senior Zach Wagner (Seattle, WA/Lakeside). Emory won the national title in the event for the third year in a row with a winning time of 1:18.61.
Women's 200 Freestyle Relay
It came down to just three-tenths of a second, but Williams was able to outreach Kenyon at the wall to earn the national title in the women’s 200 free relay with a time of 1:32.48 compared to 1:32.77 for the Ladies. Denison, which entered the evening with the top seed time from the prelims, finished fourth overall in the championship heat with a time of 1:33.34. Kenyon’s relay team included sophomore Zoe Toscos (Ft. Wayne, IN/Carroll), junior Abby Wilson (Westerville, OH/Columbus Acad.), sophomore Princess Vilan Ferguson-Nguyen (Newport Beach, CA/University) and freshman Emmerson Mirus (Madison, WI/West), while the DU contingent included sophomore Gabbie Nutter (Johannesburg, South Africa/St. Mary’s School), sophomore Casey Kirby (Long Grove, IL/Stevenson), freshman Maddie Hopkins (Chico, CA/Chico) and sophomore KT Kustritz (St. Paul, MN/Insight School).
Men's 400 IM
Denison built a comfortable lead over the field in the men’s standings following the 400 IM as four swimmers combined for 57 total points with Top-8 All-American finishes, led by sophomore Bebe Wang (Naperville, IL/Metea Valley) hitting the wall second overall with a time of 3:49.70. DU junior Matt Hedman (Anoka, MN/Anoka) checked in at fourth with a time of 3:52.83, followed by Big Red sophomore Mitch Williams (Columbus, OH/Loyola Blakefield) in fifth (3:53.09), Kenyon sophomore Colin Reardon (Upper Arlington, OH/Upper Arlington) in seventh (3:58.84) and Denison junior Ryan Stevenson (Madeira, OH/Madeira) in eighth with a time of 4:01.39. One night after winning the 200 IM, NYU’s Ian Rainey completed the clean sweep of the IM events in 2018 with a winning time of 3:47.77 in the 400.
Women's 400 IM
A pair of Denison swimmers represented the NCAC in the “A” finals of the women’s 400 IM, with sophomore Erica Hsu (Iowa City, IA/West) leading the duo by finishing third overall in 4:20.50. Classmate Natalie Zaravella (Victor, NY/Victor) finished fifth overall with a time of 4:20.70, while Williams College continued its recent dominance in the event with freshman Molly Craig earning the national title with a winning time of 4:18.56.
Men's 100 Butterfly
The NCAC saw its first men’s individual event national champion crowned in the men’s 100 fly as Denison’s Kymani Senior used his final 50 to pull ahead of the field by by one one-hundredth of a second with a winning time of 48.03, making him the first DU swimmer to earn gold in the event at the national meet since former great Aaron Cole won back-to-back titles in 1999 and 2000. Kenyon’s David Fitch also reached the wall fourth in the championship heat with a time of 48.34, while DU’s Kenny Fox finished fifth overall in 48.41.
Women's 100 Butterfly
Denison continued its successful evening in the 100 butterfly as a pair of Big Red swimmers collected Top-8 All-American awards in an individual event for the first time in their careers, led by sophomore Angela Le (Eagan, MN/Burnsville) finishing fourth overall with a time of 54.94. After swimming the third leg on the night’s opening fourth-place 200 free relay, Big Red freshman Maddie Hopkins earned her AA trophy in the 100 fly by finishing eighth overall with a time of 55.54. Williams senior Emma Waddell earned her second-straight title in the event and third overall after outpacing the field with a time of 53.39.
Men's 200 Freestyle
The Big Red picked up 27 more team points after the championship heat of the men’s 200 freestyle as freshman Drake Horton (Madison, WI/James Madison Memorial) finished fifth with a time of 1:38.32 and senior Stuart Hohm (Springfield, IL/Glenwood) clocked in the sixth-fastest time at 1:38.39. Johns Hopkins sophomore Brandon Fabian won the national title in the event with a winning time of 1:36.94.
Women's 200 Freestyle
The Kenyon Ladies had a strong showing in the “A” finals of the 200 freestyle with three swimmers finishing in the top-eight, led by junior Hannah Orbach-Mandel (Tucson, AZ/Catalina Foothills) reaching the wall third overall with a time of 1:48.45. KC sophomore Kendall Vanderhoof (Glenwood Springs, CO/Glenwood Springs) finished fifth in 1:49.19 and junior Abby Wilson was eighth overall with a time of 1:50.57, while Emory’s Cindy Cheng picked up gold in the event for the second year in a row, this time hitting the wall first in 1:46.89.
Women's One-Meter Diving
After finishing seventh overall on the one-meter board at the national meet in 2017, Denison sophomore Allison Fitzgerald (Grand Rapids, MI/Forest Hills Central) climbed two spots in the standings this year and finished fifth overall in the event with an 11-dive score of 430.70. Nickie Griesemer of Ithaca College topped the field in the final six-dive session to win the national title with a combined score of 467.60.
Men's 400 Medley Relay
Denison padded its lead in the final event on Thursday night by finishing second overall in the men’s 400 medley relay with a time of 3:14.64 with the team of junior Carson Clear (Fort Collins, CO/Fossil Ridge), junior Tiernan Foster-Smith (Edina, MN/The Blake School), Kymani Senior and Zach Wagner. Emory made it three-for-three so far in 2018 in the relay events at the national meet, this time posting a winning time of 3:13.97 in the 400 medley.
Women's 400 Medley Relay
The Kenyon Ladies capped off night two with a bang by winning the national title in the women’s 400 medley relay as the team of junior Caitlin Foley (Lewisburg, PA/Lewisburg Area), senior Julia Wilson (Bethesda, MD/Sidwell Friends), freshman Crile Hart (Pepper Pike, OH/Hawken) and Hannah Orbach-Mandel reached the wall first in 3:39.95. It marked the program's first national title in the event since 2013. Denison also earned Top-8 All-American honors in the event by finishing fourth overall in 3:41.62 with the team of Casey Kirby, KT Kustritz, Angela Le and Gabbie Nutter.
The 2018 national meet continues through Saturday evening at the IU Natatorium in Indianapolis, Indiana, with prelim sessions beginning each morning at 10:00 a.m. (EST) and final sessions starting nightly at 6:00 p.m. (EST).