2016 NCAA Division III Championships – Day 4 Prelims Live Recap

Division III Men’s and Women’s Swimming and Diving Championships

Men’s 100-yard Freestyle – Prelims

  • NCAA DIII Record: 43.16 3/24/2012 Zach Turk, Kenyon

Washington & Lee sophomore Thomas Thetford and Rowan junior Jesse Novak each won his prelims heat by half a body length, but Thetford posted the top time of the morning with 43.76; Novak was second with 44.08. Thetford was out about half a second faster than just about anyone else, while Novak’s back half was the fastest in the field. Their different strategies will be on display in the middle lanes of tonight’s final.

Buffalo State sophomore Connor Mergler dropped .4 to land the third-fastest time of the morning. Denison senior Ryan Fleming improved his seed time by .3 and qualified fourth in 44.38. Junior Ryan Boraski of Keene State was fifth with 44.42, bettering his seed time by .1. The rest of the A final will consist of Oliver Smith of Emory, Widener junior Ian Gaynor, and Gettysburg sophomore Tyler Dougherty.

Top 8:

  1. Thomas Thetford, W&L 43.76
  2. Jesse Novak, Rowan University 44.08
  3. Connor Mergler, Buffalo St. 44.33
  4. Ryan Fleming, Denison 44.38
  5. Ryan Boraski, Keene St. 44.42
  6. Oliver Smith, Emory 44.43
  7. Ian Waynor, Widener 44.62
  8. Tyler Dougherty, Gettysburg 44.80

Women’s 100-yard Freestyle – Prelims

  • NCAA DIII Record: NCAA Record: 48.98 3/20/2010 Kendra Stern, Amherst

The top seven seeds in the women’s 100 free all made the championship final. Top-seeded Emory freshman Fiona Muir led the way with 49.83; she was followed by sophomore Emma Waddell of Williams, who placed third in 2015, in 50.37. Denison junior Carolyn Kane, runner-up last year, went 50.43 for third, just ahead of Kenyon senior Hannah Lobb (50.47), last year’s fourth-place finisher.

Calvin sophomore Abby VanHarn was fifth with 50.50. She came in just in front of Trinity sophomore Lindsay Hagmann (50.79) and Emory junior Marissa Bergh (50.94). Kenyon junior Jenner McLeod, last year’s consolation winner, made the A final this time around with 50.97.

Top 8:

  1. Fiona Muir, Emory 49.83
  2. Emma Waddell, Williams 50.37
  3. Carolyn Kane, Denison 50.43
  4. Hannah Lobb, Kenyon 50.47
  5. Abby VanHarn, Calvin 50.50
  6. Lindsay Hagmann, Trinity U. 50.79
  7. Marissa Bergh, Emory 50.94
  8. Jenner McLeod, Kenyon 50.97

Men’s 200-yard Backstroke – Prelims

  • NCAA DIII Record: NCAA Record: 1:43.49 3/21/2015 Harrison Curley, Kenyon

Denison junior Jackson Lindell, bronze medalist in this event last year and top seed this year, improved his seed time by .6 to post the morning’s fastest 200 back with 1:46.41. Wheaton freshman Christopher Szymczak also took .6 off his seed time and finished second with 1:47.45, just ahead of CMS junior Matthew Williams (1:47.54), who won the 100 back here last night. Tufts freshman Kingsley Bowen made it back fourth with 1:47.69.

Kenyon junior Oscar Anderson dropped 1 second to qualify fifth in 1:47.71. Denison, still locked in a tight team battle with Kenyon, picked up a second A finalist with sophomore Jason Wesseling who went 1:47.76 for sixth. Tufts senior Michael Winget and Stevens senior Ravi Sun will round out tonight’s final, having qualified with 1:47.83 and 1:47.84, respectively.

Last year’s fourth-place finisher Benjamin Lin of Williams and Emory junior Mitchell Cooper, seeded 14th, failed to qualify for a second swim.

Top 8:

  1. Jackson Lindell, Denison 1:46.41
  2. Christopher Szymczak, Wheaton IL 1:47.45
  3. Matthew Williams, CMS 1:47.54
  4. Kingsley Bowen, Tufts 1:47.69
  5. Oscar Anderson, Kenyon 1:47.71
  6. Jason Wesseling, Denison 1:47.76
  7. Michael Winget, Tufts 1:47.83
  8. Ravi Sun, Stevens 1:47.84

2015 runner-up, Williams senior Katherine Bennett, led the field by nearly 2 seconds to earn the right to lane 4 in tonight’s final with 1:57.82. Rose-Hulman junior Eleanore Hong dropped a second to qualify second in 1:59.52. Defending champion Olivia Jackson of Williams went 1:59.73, improving her seed time by .4. MIT junior Veronika Jedryka and St. Thomas junior Emma Paulson were both about a second off their seed times; they qualified fourth and fifth in 1:59.87 and 1:59.98, respectively.

Both Washington & Lee junior Emily Rollo and Wash U sophomore Nicole Zanolli dropped about 2 seconds to earn a bid into the championship final; they qualified in 2:00.14 and 2:00.23. Chicago junior Allison Wall was the last one in with 2:00.37.

Fourth seed Cindy Cheng of Emory had a tough morning swim and failed to make finals.

There was a swimoff for 16th place between Christina Belforti of Union and Angela Ling of Pomona-Pitzer, both of whom swam 2:02.88 in prelims. Belforti won the swimoff by half a pool length, 2:01.68 to 2:07.66.

Top 8:

  1. Katherine Bennett, Williams 1:57.82
  2. Eleanore Hong, Rose-Hulman 1:59.52
  3. Olivia Jackson, Williams 1:59.73
  4. Veronika Jedryka, MIT 1:59.87
  5. Emma Paulson, St. Thomas 1:59.98
  6. Emily Rollo, W&L 2:00.14
  7. Nicole Zanolli, Wash U. MO 2:00.23
  8. Alison Wall, Chicago 2:00.37

Men’s 200-yard Breaststroke – Prelims

  • NCAA DIII Record: 1:52.97 3/21/2015 Andrew Wilson, Emory

Top-seeded Evan Holder of Johns Hopkins clocked the top time of 1:58.62 from the morning’s heats, right at his seed time. Kenyon junior Ian Reardon, who placed sixth in 2015, dropped .8 to land a 1:59.35 for second. TCNJ senior James Shangle and 2015 bronze medalist, Wash U junior Michael Lagieski, each improved by about 6/10 and posted the only other sub-2s with 1:59.80 and 1:59.83, respectively.

York senior Kyle Walthall, who was eighth in 2015, went 2:00.32 to qualify just ahead of Wabash senior Zechariah Banks (2:00.73); Banks went from 31st in 2015 to championship final in 2016, which is a nice way to finish one’s swimming career. Wheaton senior Elliot Penson (2:01.26) and Nebraska Wesleyan sophomore Garrett Cadotte (2:01.28) will round out the championship final qualifiers.

The swim of the morning belonged to Kenyon sophomore Matthew Leenhouts who dropped 7.4 seconds to catapult into the consolation final with 2:02.39.

Top 8:

  1. Evan Holder, Johns Hopkins 1:58.62
  2. Ian Reardon, Kenyon 1:59.35
  3. James Shangle, TCNJ 1:59.80
  4. Michael Lagieski, Wash U. MO 1:59.83
  5. Kyle Walthall, York 2:00.32
  6. Zechariah Banks, Wabash 2:00.73
  7. Elliot Penson, Wheaton IL 2:01.26
  8. Garrett Cadotte, Neb Wesleyan 2:01.28

Women’s 200-yard Breaststroke – Prelims

  • NCAA DIII Record: 2:12.20 2/20/2016 Sam Senczyszyn, UW Eau Claire
  • Meet Record: 2:12.83 3/11/2006 Lindsay Payne, Williams

There will be a lot of familiar faces in this year’s championship final of the women’s 200 breast; five of the morning’s top eight qualifiers were 2015 A finalists and two were B finalists. The top qualifier, however, is a new name. Samantha Senczyszyn of UW-Eau Claire may be new to the championship final but her name is already in the NCAA record books; she broke the Division III record in this event at the Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (WIAC) Championships in February. Senczyszyn went 2:14.28 in prelims, about 2 seconds off her record-setting time. The two other newcomers to the A final will be Kenyon sophomore Julia Wilson, who qualified second with 2:14.69, and Springfield junior Emily Medeiros, eighth out of heats with 2:18.26.

Returning championship finalists will include Amherst senior Emily Hyde (third in 2015), Emory senior Elizabeth Aronoff (runner-up in 2015), Denison senior Marissa Bednarek (seventh in 2015), Kenyon senior Katie Kaestner (fifth in 2015), and Emory junior Annelise Kowalsky (fourth in 2015).

Top 8:

  1. Samantha Senczyszyn, U W-Eau Claire 2:14.28
  2. Julia Wilson, Kenyon 2:14.69
  3. Emily Hyde, Amherst 2:15.76
  4. Elizabeth Aronoff, Emory 2:16.70
  5. Marissa Bednarek, Denison 2:16.88
  6. Katie Kaestner, Kenyon 2:17.73
  7. Annelise Kowalsky, Emory 2:18.25
  8. Emily Medeiros, Springfield 2:18.26

Men’s 400-yard Freestyle Relay – Prelims

  • NCAA DIII Record: NCAA Record: 2:53.59 3/24/2012, Kenyon (Somers, Turk, Ramsey, Richardson)

Denison seniors Fleming (44.54) and Conrad Wuorinen (44.20), sophomore Stuart Hohm (44.80), and junior Maxwell Howes (44.91) put up the top morning time of 2:58.45, just .31 ahead of The College of New Jersey (Joseph Dunn, Ryan Gajdzisz, Scott Vitabile, and Jason Ivins). Top-seeded Emory qualified third with 2:59.71, ahead of Williams (3:00.37), NYU (3:00.43), MIT (3:00.50), Keene State (3:00.77), and Wash U (3:00.86).

Keene State junior Boraski anchored

Top 8:

  1. Denison 2:58.45
  2. TCNJ 2:58.76
  3. Emory 2:59.71
  4. Williams 3:00.37
  5. NYU 3:00.43
  6. MIT 3:00.50
  7. Keene St. 3:00.77
  8. Wash U. MO 3:00.86

Women’s 400-yard Freestyle Relay – Prelims

  • NCAA DIII Record: NCAA Record: 3:21.28 3/22/2013, Emory (Rosenkranz, Larson, Wobler, Dobben)

The battle in the middle of the pool will be exciting tonight as the top four qualifiers, Denison, Emory, Williams, and Kenyon are separated by only 1.4 seconds. Denison posted the top time of 3:23.56 from junior Kane (50.84) and seniors Ashley Yearwood (50.86), Kate Wright (51.32), and Mary Van Leuven (50.54). Kenyon senior Hannah Lobb clocked a 49.70 anchor for the only sub-50 leg of the morning.

Top 8:

  1. Denison 3:23.56
  2. Emory 3:23.90
  3. Williams 3:24.43
  4. Kenyon 3:24.99
  5. Johns Hopkins 3:26.36
  6. Wash U. MO 3:26.60
  7. NYU 3:26.91
  8. MIT 3:27.55

Men’s 1, 650-yard Freestyle – Slower Heats

  • NCAA DIII Record: 15:01.24 3/21/2015 Arthur Conover, Kenyon

Carnegie Mellon freshman Mitchell Riek dropped 11.2 seconds to win the first heat of men’s 1650 with 15:37.71. Swimming in lane 7 Riek took it out early and was never challenged. Stevens sophomore Connor Harrigan was second in 15:45.40; he dropped 3.5 seconds. Denison sophomore Benjamin Burdick went 15:52.05 for third.

Denison senior PJ Fallon won the second heat in 15:48.46, improving his seed time by more than 2 seconds. McDaniel senior Brad Brooks went 15:52.65 for second in the heat, dropping 1.6 seconds, and Drew Hamiilton of Case Western Reserve touched third in 16:02.85 (1.3 second improvement).

The final heat of men’s 1650s featured a 5-second drop for Justin Staab, a freshman at Birmingham-Southern College. He went 16:08.63 to win the heat. His teammate, senior William Cushman, added time but still managed to beat freshman Jack Swanson of Pomona-Pitzer for second in a heated battle over the final 200 yards.

Women’s 1, 650-yard Freestyle – Slower Heats

  • NCAA DIII Record: 16:21.44 3/21/2015 Sarah Thompson, Williams

The first heat of women’s 1650s was like a chess match, with different strategies being played out to greater or lesser success. Kenyon junior Alexa Korsberg took it out in lane 1, moving out to clean water early on and hanging on to a body length lead for the first 1000 yards. About 1-2 seconds back was the heat’s top seed, Williams freshman Alison McNamara. McNamara began her descent at the 1200, whereas Korsberg had fallen off her early pace. Meanwhile Emory’s Shelby Fruge made her move over the middle 500, nearly catching both McNamara and Korsberg. It proved to be too much too early; Fruge let up at the 1000 and fell off altogether at the 1300. Taking advantage of the opportunity, Incarnate Word junior Meg Stanley, who had begun her descent at the 1000 mark, put her legs into the final 200 and passed Fruge to finish third in the heat. The times were McNamara with 16:55.68, Korsberg with 17:00.35, and Stanley with 17:00.88. Fruge was fourth in 17:06.10.

Ming-fen Ong of Emory dropped 11 seconds to win heat 2 in 16:57.94 ahead of Kenyon freshman Esraa Abdel Khalik (17:05.81), who took 4.6 seconds off her seed time. Third in that heat was Mount Union sophomore Dana Lautenschleger with 17:07.52, a 5.3-second improvement.

Women’s 3-meter Diving – Prelims

  • NCAA DIII Record: 517.10 3/20/2010 Hayley Emerick, Trinity


Top 8:


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8 years ago

That Keene St kid with the only under 44 split in the 400 free relay. Will be interesting to see if he can do something like that and challenge for the title in the 100 free tonight. Don’t remember seeing his name going to finals last year. Good for him.

8 years ago

This morning sealed it: Denison men will win the meet.

About Anne Lepesant

Anne Lepesant

Anne Lepesant is the mother of four daughters, all of whom swam in college. With an undergraduate degree from Princeton (where she was an all-Ivy tennis player) and an MBA from INSEAD, she worked for many years in the financial industry, both in France and the U.S. Anne is currently …

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