MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. (2/18/17)---The numbers were impressive for Concordia at the MIAC Championship Meet. The Cobbers produced two individual school records, two relay school records, 33 season-best times out of 34 entries and all five relay teams posted a season best mark.
The season-best times and school records helped Concordia finish in ninth place at the championship meet. The Cobbers finished with 127 team points.
First-year head coach Gary Fisher was extremely pleased with the way the team competed at the conference championship.
"We didn't just have our top one or two swimmers put up good swims during the three days," commented Fisher. "Every one of our athletes set a goal and then reached it during the meet. I am really proud of the entire team."
While it was a team effort at the championship meet, senior Sarah Nelson took the lead. Nelson broke the school record in both the 100-yard and 200-yard butterfly events and finished in the Top 15 in the conference in both races.
Nelson started her record-breaking performance by bettering the school record in the 100-yard butterfly on Friday when she swam a 1:01.05 in the prelims of the 100-yard butterfly. Nelson then swam a 1:01.64 in the finals and finished in 13th place.
Nelson capped her record-breaking meet by shattering her own school record in the 200-yard butterfly. Once again the record swim came in the prelims as she touched the wall in 2:17.64. That time missed qualifying for the "A" finals by .12 of a second. Nelson's time was .55 of a second faster than her time at the 2015 MIAC Meet when she placed 13th in the event. Nelson was just a bit off her prelim time in the finals. She clocked a 2:18.28, which would have still broken her old school record, and placed 11th in the event.
The two relay records at the meet came in medley style. The Cobbers broke both the 200-yard and 400-yard medley relay records.
CC swam a 4:09.42 in the 400-yard medley on Thursday to break the old record and then put up a time of 1:53.53 to start the night session on Friday which was also a brand new record.
Sophomore Ciara White came away with the top finish by a Cobber at the meet. She finished 10th in the 100-yard breaststroke and put up a pair of Top 15 finishes at the meet. White swam a 1:09.16 in the prelims on Friday and was the top qualifier for the "B" final. She missed a spot in the Top 8 by 1.08 seconds. White then put up a mark of 1:09.41 in the finals to place in the No.10 spot.
White once again showed why she is one of the top few breaststrokers in school history by qualifying for another "B" final in the 200-yard breaststroke. White came home in 2:34.19 to claim a spot in the Top16 in the prelims on Saturday and then took a huge chunk of time off that mark in the finals by posting a time of 2:31.93 which was good for 15th place.
Senior Libby Hardwick was the only other Concordia athlete to qualify for a "B" final race. Hardwick earned her Top 15 finish in the 100-yard backstroke. She swam a season-best time of 1:01.58 in the prelims and then posted a mark of 1:01.82 in the finals and claimed 15th place.
Hardwisck also has a season-best time in the 200-yard backstroke as she swam a 2:18.36 in the prelims which put her in the No.22 spot.
The other two Cobbers to finish in the Top 21 at the meet were senior Andrea Kittleson and junior Ann Marie O'Connell. Kittleson led the group of Cobber milers as she swam a season-best time of 19:23.20 and finished 19th in the 1,650-yard freestyle.
Katrina Teskey and Lily Johnson were just behind Kittleson in the wet mile and both swammers posted season-best times. Teskey clocked a 19:45.92 and was 22nd while Johnson was just inside the 20-minute mark with a time of 19:59.51 and finished in 23rd place.
O'Connell posted her season-best time, and finished 21st, in the 200-yard butterfly. She touched the wall in 2:27.87 and was 1.88 seconds off the last "B" qualifying time.
FINAL TEAM SCORES
1. University of St. Thomas - 908
2. Gustavus Adolphus College - 684.5
3. Carleton College - 477
4. St. Olaf College - 448
5. Saint Catherine University - 282
6. College of Saint Benedict - 273.5
7. Macalester College - 191
8. Hamline University - 151
9. Concordia - 127
10. Augsburg College - 89
11. Saint Mary's - 82