St. Louis, Mo., March 19, 2014 – The Washington University in St. Louis men's and women's swimming teams combined for five All-America finishes and set two school records to highlight the first day of the 2014 NCAA Division III Swimming & Diving Championships Wednesday at the IU Natatorium.
The Washington U. women scored 23 points to sit in ninth place in the women's team standings after the first day of competition. The WUSTL men currently sit in 12th place with 23 points. Emory University leads the women's team race with 127 points, while Denison University is in first place in the men's team standings with 173 points.
Senior Chi Pham posted the highest finish of the day for the Bears with her seventh-place finish in the women's 200 individual medley. Pham posted a season-best time of 2:04.27 to advance to the championship final, before clocking a time of 2:05.01 to finish seventh. It marks the third time Pham has earned All-America honors in the event, after placing ninth in 2011 and 13th in 2013.
Junior Sara Taege also earned All-America honors for the Washington U. women on day one. She broke her own school record in the prelims of the women's 500 freestyle with a time of 4:54.32 to advance to the championship final, where she placed eighth with a time of 4:59.61. Taege picked up All-America accolades in the event for the third year in a row after placing seventh in 2012 and 13th in 2013.
Juniors Zane Turpin and Luke Dobben both earned All-America honorable mention honors for the Washington U. men in the 500 freestyle. Turpin won the consolation final with a time of 4:28.61 to finish ninth overall, while Dobben was 13th with a time of 4:29.99. The men's 200-medley relay also raced to All-America honorable mention honors with a 12th-place finish. The team of junior Matt Nutter, freshman Michael Lagieski, sophomore Reed Dalton and freshman Justin Morrell clocked a time of 1:31.20 in the consolation final after sophomore Kaisen Yao, Lagieski, Dalton and Morrell posted a prelim time of 1:31.38.
Lagieski also broke a six-year-old school record in the prelims of the men's 200 IM. He took more than 10 seconds off his time from the opening meet of the season, posting a time of 1:52.78 to finish 31st overall. Lagieski's time bettered the previous school record of 1:53.46 set by Perry Bullock in 2008.
The women's 200-medley relay team of sophomores Hannah Lillioja, Sophie Gan and Amanda Stadermann, and freshman Lauren Carlos just missed out on advancing to the consolation final. The team's prelim time of 1:45.68 was just one-tenth of a second behind the final consolation-final qualifier, as they finished 17th overall.
Sophomores Katie Anderson (37th – 50 free), Kristalyn McAfee (21st – 500 free), Gan (32nd – 200 IM) and Stadermann (42nd – 200 IM) also competed individually for the Washington U. women Wednesday. Dalton (48th – 50 free) and freshman Andrew Ellison (34th – 500 free) were the other two individuals who competed on the first day for the WUSTL men.
Nine individuals will be in action for the Washington U. men's and women's swimming teams on day two of the NCAA Championships Thursday. Carlons (100 butterfly), Lillioja (100 butterfly), McAfee (200 free), Pham (400 IM), Stadermann (100 butterfly) and Taege (400 IM) will all take to the pool for the Washington U. women. Dalton (100 butterfly), Ellison (200 freestyle) and Turpin (400 IM) will be in action for the WUSTL men. In addition, the men's and women's 200-free and 400-medley relays will also compete on day two. Prelims begin at 10 a.m. (ET), with finals starting at 6 p.m. (ET).