Women Finish 2nd, Men 3rd at Big 12 Swim Champs

  • By Jonathan Harkey
  • |
  • March 02, 2013 10:09 PM
  • |
MORGANTOWN, W.Va. - The West Virginia University swimming and diving squads completed the final day of competition on Saturday evening at the Big 12 Championships, winning two individual championships and breaking two school records, at the Lee & Joe Jamail Texas Swimming Center in Austin, Texas.

The women finished second, solidifying their final result in the 400 free relay with a third-place finish in 3:21.36, narrowly defeating TCU. The foursome was made up of senior Rachael Burnett, freshman Jaimee Gillmore, senior Mandie Nugent and junior Eva Burlingham. The women had a final score of 576 points, two points ahead of TCU.

The WVU men took third with 788 points, with sophomore Julien Vialette, freshman Andrew Marsh, sophomore Nathan Cobbe and freshman Ross Glegg finishing second in the 400 free relay with a time of 2:56.94. TCU took second place with 798 points.

"What an exciting end to our week," coach Vic Riggs says. "The women's meet came down to the last relay to get second and we did. It was just a great way to finish our week. The men's meet was just as exciting and we were just short. Overall, 13 school records, five Big 12 Champions, one Big 12 meet record and one women's swimmer of the meet is excellent."

Texas won both the men’s and women’s championships, finishing with 985 points on the men’s side and 1,051 points on the women’s.

Burnett earned her third overall win in the Big 12 Championships in the 1650 free, finishing with a school-record time of 16:04.26. Burnett won all three of her individual events (200 free, 500 free, and 1650 free) for the second-straight year at the conference championships. Senior Kata Fodor placed fifth in the event with a time of 16:33.34.

Also winning a championship was Nugent in the 200 fly, finishing in 1:55.82. The win was the fifth individual conference win of Nugent’s career and her fourth-consecutive win in the 200 fly. The Mountaineers were well represented in the event with sophomore Julie Ogden taking second (1:58.71), followed by freshmen Natalie Johnsen and Kelsey Frantz in sixth (2:03.13) and eighth (2:03.41), respectively.

Senior Breanna McCann broke another school record, this time with a fourth-place finish in the 200 breast in a time of 2:13.45. Sophomore Jenelle Zee and freshman Morgan Emter swam in the “B” finals, finishing in 10th (2:17.73) and 16th (2:20.04), respectively.

Junior Danielle Smith placed fourth with a time of 1:57.49 in the women’s 200 back, while freshman Courtney Miller placed 13th overall and senior Austen Carrington placed 16th overall with times of 2:02.88 and 2:05.33, respectively.

Three women’s swimmers represented WVU in the 100 free “B” final with Gillmore placing tenth (50.82), Burlingham finishing 13th (51.55) and freshman Abby Hendershot touching the line in 16th (52.87).

Six swimmers scored points for the men’s squad in the 100 free, with four swimmers in the Top 8 of the event. Freshman Ross Glegg took third (43.93), followed closely by sophomore Julien Vialette in fourth (44.21). In the “B” final, sophomore Nathan Cobbe placed ninth (45.30), freshman Andrew Marsh placed 10th (45.37), senior Hugh Simmonds placed 11th (45.63) and sophomore Miles Molinaro placed 13th (47.03).

Another highlight of the evening was the men’s 200 breast in which sophomore Christopher Brill placed second in a time of 2:00.14. Also in the finals for WVU was freshmen Jake Iotte and Aidan Fumagalli and junior Peter Murto. Iotte took fourth in 2:04.28, while Fumagalli and Murto finished seventh (2:05.77) and eighth (2:07.82), respectively.

In the men’s 200 back freshman Jay Hickey finished sixth with a time of 1:46.38, followed by sophomore David Palley in ninth with a time of 1:50.80.

Sophomore Daeton Davenport was WVU’s lone representative in the men’s 1650 free, taking fifth in a time of 15:36.94.

Senior Kyle Bandy closed his career at WVU with a sixth-place finish in the 200 fly, finishing in a time of 1:54.82, while freshman Chase Williams placed fourth (1:50.19).

The WVU diving squads finished their competition with the platform. Freshman Christian Parker took fourth with a score of 201.30. Freshman Ibrahim Ismail placed seventh with a score of 184.45.

For the women’s divers, sophomore Haily VandePoel finished tenth with a score of 166.25. Freshman Tori Taffner placed 12th overall with a score of 162.75 and sophomore Jennifer Rey placed 14th overall with a score of 147.80.

The swimming teams are off until the NCAA Championships, which are held from March 21-23 for the women, and March 28-30 for the men. The divers travel to the NCAA Zone Diving Championships which are from March 15-17.