Women’s swimming races to top times at Middlebury Invite

Women’s swimming (8-0) competed against Amherst, Middlebury, Springfield and UVM on Saturday in the unscored Middlebury Invitational last weekend. The women turned in top performances in the meet one week after their competition against Middlebury was canceled due to widespread illness on the Middlebury team. On Jan. 21, the women earned a powerful 188-110 victory over Springfield.

The women turned in several impressive times and scores at the Middlebury Invitational. Notably, Hannah Wilson ’12 broke the pool record in the three-meter dive with a score of 478.35. McKenzie Murdoch ’14 came in just behind her, finishing second with 474.5 points. Murdoch then took first in the one-meter event, with Hannah Wilson claiming second.

In the 1650 freestyle, Julie Okorn ’14 swam a 17:58.98 to claim first, beating out the second place finisher from Amherst by just under one second.

The women swept the 100 butterfly and 100 backstroke, as Sarah Thompson ’15 took first in both events. Thompson touched the wall in 59.02 in the 100 butterfly, followed by KC Ha ’13 in second at 59.72 and Kelsey Roggensack ’13 in 1:00.10. Thompson also claimed first in the 100 backstroke with a time of 59.77, followed by co-captain Logan Todhunter ’12 in second at 1:00.01 and Caroline Wilson ’13 in third at 1:00.65.

Rebecca Maher ’13 swam to third place in both the 200 freestyle and the 200 breaststroke in times of 2:01.23 and 2:31.46, respectively.

The women also swept the 500 freestyle and the 200 butterfly. Todhunter led the pack in the 500 freestyle with a strong time of 5:09.57, just ahead of Okorn in second with a time of 5:09.57 and Abbie Deal ’12 in third with a time of 5:17.76. Caroline Wilson touched the wall first in the 200 butterfly at 2:05.91. Thompson followed in second at 2:10.40, and Katherine O’Leary ’13 rounded out the Williams sweep in third at 2:14.29.

The team finished a successful weekend with a victory in the 400 freestyle relay. The team of Thompson, Michaela Kearney ’15, Catherine Treesh ’15 and Bryn Dunbar ’13 finished in 3:38.31, four seconds ahead of Middlebury’s team.

“This was a very fun meet, especially because we got to watch some people swim very fast in their last races of the season,” Todhunter said. “I thought the team did a very good job keeping the energy up for three sessions. The meet was a nice a tune-up for NESCACs, which is quickly approaching.”

The women’s final regular season home meet was scheduled for Jan. 28, but a bout of illness struck the Middlebury team, forcing the Panthers to withdraw from the event.

On Jan. 21, the women conquered Springfield 188-110. The women opened the meet with a one-two finish in the 200 medley relay. The squad of Kearney, Wilson, Todhunter and Treesh took first in a time of 1:50.08.

In the 1000 freestyle, Maher logged an impressive swim, leading teammates Okorn and Kathleen Morrison ’12 in a sweep of the event. Maher finished in 10:44.13, followed by Okorn in 10:56.36 and Morrison in 11:13.07. The women kept the momentum going, finishing first and second in the 200 freestyle and 100 backstroke. Thompson claimed first in the 200 freestyle in a  time of 1:55.39, with Kearney coming second at 2:01.11. Wilson claimed top honors in the 100 backstroke, touching the wall at 1:00.22. Tess Vorselen ’15 took second in the event in 1:03.31.

“Before this meet we decided to set specific team goals in order to keep the meet exciting and have goals to work for as a team,” Todhunter said. “We met some but not all of them, so we’re excited to keep working towards meeting them.”

The women will next travel to Wesleyan on Feb. 17 to compete in the NESCAC Championships.

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