2018 NCAA Division II Women’s Swimming and Diving Championships
- Dates: Wednesday, March 14 – Saturday, March 17
- Swimming: prelims 10am, finals 6pm; Diving: 2pm
- Location: Greensboro Aquatic Center, Greensboro, North Carolina (Eastern Time Zone)
- Defending Champions: Queens (results)
- Psych Sheet
- Live Results
- Championship Central
The 2018 NCAA Division II Women’s Swimming and Diving Championships kicks off Wednesday, March 14 in Greensboro, North Carolina. The defending champion, Queens University of Charlotte, is hoping to extend its title streak to four years in a row and comes into the meet heavily favored with 14 swimmers, 12 of whom are projected to score in the top-16 of 29 events. Nova S’eastern and Drury will be expected to battle for second. Division II-newcomers Oklahoma Baptist leads the next wave of challengers that consists of Fresno Pacific, Lindenwood, and Tampa. Of all these schools, only Oklahoma Baptist and Lindenwood have divers in the meet.
Clarion returns all 58 points they scored in diving last year with junior Christina Sather (32 points) and sophomore Emma Kehn (26 points). Other returning divers include sophomores Mikayla Karasek (Grand Valley, 18 points), Kelsey Vreeman (Colorado Mesa, 15), Mia Teifer (Wayne State, 15), and Nadia Mulder (West Chester, 6), and juniors Mariah Constantakos (West Florida, 3) and Brooke Abrantes (UC San Diego, 1). St. Cloud State and West Florida each have 5 divers in the meet this year; UC San Diego, Cal Baptist, Wayne State, and Grand Valley State all have 3.
Queens is expected to dominate in freestyle. The Royals have been steady performers in the 50 through the 500 in the past, but this year their range extends through the mile. Freshman Francesca Bains is a top-8 seed in the 500/1000/1650 freestyles. Another freshman, Wanda Dollmayer, is one of the top-seeded sprinters in the meet. And 100/200 specialists, junior Josephina Lorda and senior Mckenzie Stevens, were the top-scoring Royals in 2017 with 48 and 39 individual points.
However, Nova S’eastern freshman Emma Sundstedt is the one to watch in 2018. Sundstedt is the top seed in the 200/500/1000/1650 freestyle events, and the longer the distance, the greater the lead she has over the rest of the field. She broke the Division II record in the 1000 free in December at the 2017 Spartan Invitational, so her seed time is already faster than the championship record. Another freshman with scoring potential in the distance free events is Buse Topcu of Cal Baptist.
Drury’s Emma Dahlgren, who scored 40 points as a freshman last year, is seeded top-8 in the 500/1000/1650 free and 9th in the 200 free. Lindenwood junior Simone de Rijcke is also one of the top seeds in the 200/500/1000/1650; she was responsible for 18 of the Lions’ points in 2017.
Oklahoma Baptist sophomore Victoria Fonville, top seed in the 50 free, and Western State Colorado junior Miranda Yarnell, #1 seed in the 100 free, are two sprinters to keep an eye on.
NMU sophomore Rachel Helm, who won the 100 back and placed third in the 200 back in 2017, comes in this year with the fastest seed time in the 200 (1:56.38, less than 1 second off the NCAA record) and the third-fastest in the 100. Drury senior Yekaterina Rudenko, runner-up to Helm in the 100 last year, is top seed (53.44) this time around. Oklahoma Baptist sophomore Celina Marquez is second seed in the 100 (53.70) and fourth in the 200.
Drury packs the punch in the breaststroke events, leading the psych sheet with the top two seeds in the 100 and the top seed in the 200. NCAA record-holder Bailee Nunn, a sophomore, comes in with the #1 times in both distances (59.63 and 2:11.34). Her 100 time is only .12 off Theresa Michalak of West Florida’s 2017 meet record, while her 200 seed time is just over 2 seconds off the NCAA mark she set last year at this meet. Nunn’s teammate, senior Zuzanna Chwadeczko, is seeded 2nd in the 100. Cal State East Bay senior Claire Beaty has the #2 time in the 200 breast and #7 in the 100. Fresno Pacific sophomore Olga Tovstogan and Carson-Newman senior Maggie Melhorn are also seeded in the top-5 in both distances.
Queens is expected to score heavily in butterfly, with the #1 seed in both the 100 and the 200. 2017 runner-up, sophomore Georgia DaCruz, leads the field in the 100 with 53.27. Senior Stevens, who took third in the 200 last year, comes in with the top time of 1:57.62, nearly 2 seconds faster than her time in 2017. Simon Fraser sophomore Jessie Gibson is seeded second in the 200 fly (1:58.83) and fourth in the 100 fly (53.93). Cal Baptist senior Sofia Petrenko, who set the championship record in the 200 fly as a sophomore at Wingate in 2016 (1:57.94) is fourth seed in that event.
Defending champion Nunn of Drury is the runaway favorite in the 200 IM, coming in with the only sub-2:00 seed time (1:56.78). Nova S’eastern senior Courtney Deveny is seeded #1 in the 400 IM (4:16.40) and #2 in the 200 IM (2:00.22). Queens senior Stevens, Drury’s Chwadeczko, and Oklahoma Baptist freshman Marizel Van Jaarsveld also come in with 2:00s.
After Deveny in the 400 are Cal Baptist’s Petrenko (4:20.45) and a trio of 4:21s: Bains of Queens, Fresno Pacific senior Bavindeep Basra, and her teammate, sophomore Laura Fornshell.
The top women’s ten teams from the psych sheet, including distance events and relays, but excluding diving, are as follows:
- Queens University of Charlotte
- Nova Southeastern
- Oklahoma Baptist
- Fresno Pacific
- Cal Baptist
- Saint Leo
Wednesday, March 14
- 1000-yard freestyle
- 200-yard individual medley
- 50-yard freestyle
- 3-meter diving (W)
- 200-yard medley relay
Thursday, March 15
- 200-yard freestyle relay
- 400-yard individual medley
- 100-yard butterfly
- 200-yard freestyle
- 1-meter diving (M)
- 400-yard medley relay
Friday, March 16
- 500-yard freestyle
- 100-yard backstroke
- 100-yard breaststroke
- 200-yard butterfly
- 1-meter diving (W)
- 800-yard freestyle relay
Saturday, March 17
- 1650-yard freestyle
- 100-yard freestyle
- 200-yard backstroke
- 200-yard breaststroke
- 3-meter diving (M)
- 400-yard freestyle relay