2016 Women’s ACC Championships: Day 4 Finals Live Recap


The final night of competition at the 2016 ACC championships could see a slew of records fall. Leah Smith will take center pool in the women’s 1650. Her teammate, Courtney Bartholomew, will go head to head with Alexia Zevnik in the 200 back. We’ll see some sprint freestyle action from Kelsi Worrell, who powered to a 47-low in prelims of the 100 free.


  1. Leah Smith, Virginia- 15:25.30
  2. Hannah Moore, NC State- 15:50.46
  3. Rachel Muller, NC State- 16:02.15

Virginia’s Leah Smith rewrote the NCAA, ACC, and meet record books in the 1650 freestyle tonight, clocking a 15:25.30 to break Brittany Maclean’s 15:27.84 set in 2014. That was a huge swim for Smith, who dropped over 9 seconds of her previous best time of 15:34.46 from last year’s NCAA championships.

Smith had company under the 16-minute mark tonight. NC State’s Hannah Moore also made a huge time drop, knocking nearly 28 seconds off her personal best to claim silver in 15:50.46. Her teammate Rachel Muller joined her on the podium, dropping 20 seconds to take 3rd in 16:02.15.

The next two finishers were under the time it took to qualify for NCAAs last season (16:17.36). Virginia’s Hanne Borgerson took 4th in 16:07.60. Virginia Tech’s Jessica Hespeler touched in 16:11.47 for 5th.


  1. Courtney Bartholomew, Virginia- 1:49.90
  2. Alexia Zevnik, NC State- 1:51.26
  3. Hellen Moffitt, NC State- 1:52.35

Courtney Bartholomew was just off her meet record from last season, breaking 1:50 to win with an impressive 1:49.90 tonight. That time was .03 off the record and within tenths of her best time from last year’s NCAAs.

NC State’s Alexia Zevnik shaved a tenth off her prelims time to take 2nd in 1:51.26. Behind her, UNC’s Hellen Moffitt and Virginia’s Megan Moroney were neck and neck in the race for 3rd. Moroney made a late charge, but it was Moffitt who was able to hold on for a spot on the podium. Moffitt was 3rd in 1:52.35, and Moroney was 4th in 1:52.65.


  1. Kelsi Worrell, Louisville- 47.30
  2. Mallory Comerford, Louisville- 48.31
  3. Riki Bonnema, NC State- 48.50

Kelsi Worrell was at it again tonight, setting a new meet and conference record in the women’s 100 free. Worrell’s 47.30 clipped her record from this morning, and set her on top of the podium tonight. Her freshman teammate Mallory Comerford made it a Louisville 1-2, swimming a personal best 48.31 to grab the silver medal.

The race for 3rd came down to the finish between 2 NC State swimmers. Riki Bonnema and Natalie Labonge were separated by just .01. At the end, Bonemma got her hand on the wall ahead of Labonge to take 3rd in 48.50. Labonge was 4th in 48.51.

The next 2 finishers, UNC’s Lauren Earp (48.51) and Virginia’s Shannon Rauth (48.97) also got under the 49 second barrier tonight.


  1. Laura Simon, Virginia- 2:06.86
  2. Andee Cottrell, Louisville- 2:07.42
  3. Weronika Palusz, Virginia Tech- 2:07.95

Virginia’s Laura Simon brought home the ACC championship title in the 200 breast tonight. Simon touched the wall in 2:06.86 to secure the gold.

Andee Cottrell and Weronika Palusz were also well under the 2:10 barrier to take home the silver and bronze medals. Cottrell took 2nd place with a 2:07.42. Palusz brought it home faster on the final 50, but didn’t have enough room to catch Cottrell. She finished narrowly behind for 3rd in 2:07.95.

NC State’s Kayla Brumbaum was off her prelims time, swimming a 2:10.29. That was still good for 4th and some big points for her team.


  1. Kaitlyn Jones, Virginia- 1:54.65
  2. Klaudia Nazieblo, Virginia Tech- 1:55.30
  3. Jen Marrkand, Virginia- 1:55.87

Virginia’s Kaitlyn Jones claimed her first individual ACC championship title of the meet in the women’s 200 fly finals tonight. Jones swam a 1:54.65 to earn the win for UVA ahead of Virginia Tech’s Klaudia Nazieblo, who touched in 1:55.30 for 2nd.

Nazieblo made her move on the 2nd half to surpass Virginia’s Jen Marrkand. Marrkand was the fastest to the wall at the 100, taking it out in 54.78. She faded in the back half, but managed to hold on for the bronze in 1:55.87 ahead of Duke’s Isabella Paez (1:56.04).


  1. NC State- 3:11.90
  2. Virginia- 3:13.45
  3. UNC- 3:13.75

NC State topped off a stellar team performance at the ACC championships with another relay victory in the women’s 400 free relay. 3 of the 4 women were under 48 on their splits. Alexia Zevnik (47.95), Riki Bonnema (47.91), Courtney Caldwell (47.85), and Natalie Labonge (48.19) combined for a winning time of 3:11.90.

2nd place went to Virginia in 3:13.45, highlighted by a 47.98 anchor from Courtney Bartholomew. She closed fast enough to edge Virginia ahead of the UNC women, who took bronze in 3:13.75.

The fastest split of any relay belonged to Louisville’s Kelsi Worrell. Worrell swam the leadoff leg, tying her meet and conference record of 47.30 set earlier in the session. The Louisville quartet ended up in 4th overall with a 3:15.59.

Final Team Scores

The University of Virginia came away with a 9th-straight ACC Championship at the end of the day, winning by 164.5 points ahead of North Carolina State. The Cavaliers’ point total is 14 points higher than last year, though a more balanced conference overall led to a much bigger margin of victory.

  1. Virginia – 1332.5
  2. North Carolina State – 1178
  3. North Carolina – 1080
  4. Louisville – 1059.5
  5. Virginia Tech – 705
  6. Duke – 642.5
  7. Notre Dame – 537.5
  8. Miami – 502.5
  9. Florida State – 444.5
  10. Pitt – 425
  11. Georgia Tech – 356
  12. Boston College – 152
  13. Clemson – 86

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Eddie Rowe
6 years ago

Check the last sentence. I think you meant “smaller” not “bigger”

Reply to  Eddie Rowe
6 years ago

Eddie – the margin of victory was bigger than last year. Thanks for checking, though.

Reply to  Braden Keith
6 years ago

OK, misinterpreted your meaning. I thought you meant a more-balanced conference took points from first and spread them out, leading to a smaller margin, but the balance took points from second and spread them out for a larger margin. Makes sense now.

6 years ago

An incredible, balanced meet for the Wolfpack! Medalists in 15 events, 2 relay champs in ACC record time, a diving champ, 17 school records and a bunch of A cuts. Everybody mentions the team’s sprint prowess, but kudos to Coach Taylor’s distance group for stepping up and showing that the Pack can do it all.

In 5 years the Pack has transformed from an 8th finish at 2011 ACCs to a team that places 2nd in the conference, scores Top 20 at NCAAs and is ranked Top 15 throughout the year in the polls. Adds more depth to the ACC on the conference and NCAA level. Can’t wait to see the Pack and the rest of the ACC women down… Read more »

bobo gigi
6 years ago

Thanks Lauren for the “technical” improvements.

Back to that meet, very impressive Worrell and Bartolomew because I think both girls will go faster at NCAAs. Which will not be the case for all swimmers who have shined this week at these conference meets.

6 years ago

Actually you have the places for 5th and 6th off by one each. The girls you have listed were 4th and 5th while Summer Finke was 6th.

6 years ago

Some fast swimming. We’ll see if UVA can keep it up at ncaas, jones particular has yet to swim well there. Louisville despite 4th is a very good ncaa team, just lacks depth beyond 10 swimmers.

UNC disappointing. Moffit the bright spot. Being behind nc state in women now is a huge blow.

NC state team of the meet. They truly dominate the state of North Carolina in swimming now and are at a different level than UNC. Should push UVA next year for title.

Reply to  Porkchop2244
6 years ago

NC state team of the meet? Clearly someone has a huge bias. Any normal person would think UVA would win team of the meet since they won by 150 points.

Reply to  ACC Fan
6 years ago

perhaps he means how a team did respective to each of their expectations?

Reply to  Porkchop2244
6 years ago

NC State team of the meet? You’d think the team of the meet should maybe be the team that won the meet by 150 points. But that would make too much sense huh?

ACC Fanboy
Reply to  ACC Fan
6 years ago

Well Virginia was pretty much expected to win and honestly probably by a larger margin than they did. NC state did’t have a great ACCs last year so this was a huge performance for them.

6 years ago

“Virginia’s Kaitlyn Jones claimed her first individual ACC championship title of the meet in the women’s 200 fly finals ”
Kaitlyn Jones won the 400 IM

bobo gigi
6 years ago

Penguin, Leah Smith continues to improve day after day and will be in a very good position to qualify for Rio.
But she is still far from being on the same planet as Katie Ledecky. Nobody is on her planet. It’s another world.

6 years ago

Smith with an insane swim. 28s the entire way through.
I want to see her at least challenge ledecky.

About Lauren Neidigh

Lauren Neidigh

Lauren Neidigh is a former NCAA swimmer at the University of Arizona (2013-2015) and the University of Florida (2011-2013). While her college swimming career left a bit to be desired, her Snapchat chin selfies and hot takes on Twitter do not disappoint. She's also a high school graduate of The …

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