Michael Lagieski Wins 100 Breaststroke National Title to Highlight Day Three of NCAA Championships
Indianapolis, Ind., March 21, 2014 – Washington University in St. Louis freshman Michael Lagieski set a meet and school record on his way to winning the national championship in the men's 100 breaststroke to highlight five All-America finishes Friday on the third day of the 2014 NCAA Division III Swimming & Diving Championships at the IU Natatorium.
In fourth place after the first 50 yards, Lagieski closed the final 50 yards .2 of a second faster than the runner-up finisher to set an NCAA Division III Championship meet record with a time of 54.10. Emory University's Andrew Wilson, who finished second in a time of 54.26, also finished faster than the previous meet record of 54.27 set in 2009. The time was more than .3 of a second faster than Lagieski's own previous school record time of 54.42. Lagieski is the fourth men's swimmer in Washington University to win a national championship, joining Michael Slavik (2006, 50 freestyle), Eric Triebe (2006, 200 free) and Alex Beyer (2009 and 2010, 400 individual medley).
Lagieski's individual title helped move the Washington U. men into 14th in the team standings heading into the final day of competition. The Bears have scored 80 points, which is their highest point total since 2010. Denison University remained in first in the men's team standings with 374 points. On the women's side, Washington U. enters Saturday's action in seventh place with 115 points, the most points for the Bears since 2008. Emory sits in first place with 411.5 points after three days.
The best finish for the Washington U. women Friday came in the 800-free relay, where the team of junior Sara Taege, freshman MariMac Collins, and sophomores Kristalyn McAfee and Toireasa Rafferty-Millett finished seventh with a season-best time of 7:28.62. Sophomore Amanda Stadermann earned the first All-America honorable mention award of her career with an 11th-place finish in the 200 butterfly in a time of 2:04.78. Rafferty-Millett also picked up the first individual All-America honorable mention of her career by finishing 14th in the event with a time of 2:06.15, while Taege finished 28th in 2:08.78.
The men's 800-free relay team of juniors Luke Dobben, Matt Nutter and Zane Turpin, and freshman Justin Morrell posted the fifth All-America finish of the day for Washington U. The Bears placed 15th with a time of 6:49.01. Dobben also just missed qualifying for the finals in the 200 butterfly, clocking a time of 1:50.29 to finish 18th, just .13 of a second off his school record. Nutter finished 35th in the 100 backstroke with a time of 51.26.
Three individuals also competed for the Washington U. women in the 100 backstroke Friday. Sophomore Katie Anderson (57.44) finished 21st, while senior Chi Pham (57.89) was 28th and sophomore Hannah Lillioja (58.01) was 31st. Sophomore Sophie Gan added a 29th-place finish for Washington U. in the women's 100 breaststroke.
Ten individuals and two relays are scheduled to compete for Washington U. on the final day of the NCAA Championships Saturday. Anderson (200 backstroke), Gan (200 breaststroke), Lillioja (200 backstroke) and McAfee (100 free) will be in action for the WUSTL women. Sophomore Reed Dalton (100 free), freshman Andrew Ellison (1,650 free), Lagieski (200 breaststroke) and Nutter (200 backstroke) will compete in Saturday morning's prelims, while Dobben and Turpin will swim in the fastest heat of the 1,650 free Saturday evening. Prelims begin at 10 a.m. (ET), with finals starting at 6 p.m. (ET).