2018 NCAA Division II Women’s Championships – Day 4 Finals Live Recap

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
  • Video
  • Live Results
  • Championship Central

Day 4

Women’s 1650 Yard Freestyle – Slower Heats

  • NCAA DII: 16:17.66 3/15/2008 Kristen Frost, Southern Conn St
  • Meet: 16:17.66 3/15/2008 Kristen Frost, Southern Conn St
  1. Georgia Wright, SO West Chester 16:25.78
  2. Buse Topcu, FR Cal Baptist 16:30.27
  3. Francesca Bains, FR Queens (NC) 16:31.80

As she had done in the 1000 on Wednesday night, Cal Baptist freshman Buse Topcu was the first one out of the chute. She established an early lead, with defending champion Georgia Wright of West Chester following in second. Fresno Pacific sophomore Laura Fornshell and Nova S’eastern freshman Emma Sundstedt traded stroke for stroke, tied for third, for the first 500 yards.

At about the 600, while Topcu was extending her lead, Queens freshman Francesca Bains began to move up to catch Fornshell and Sundstedt. There was a clear separation between that group and Wright, and another break between Wright and Topcu. By the 900 Topcu was up by about 4 body lengths, and Bains had joined Forshell and Sundstedt, the three middle lanes moving together.

Wright began to make her move at about the 1250. She pulled ahead of Topcu, who looked like she might be struggling. By the 1400 Wright was up by half a body length; by the 1500, it was a full body length. Meanwhile, Bains was moving away from Fornshell and had her sights on Topcu. But every time Topcu looked like she might be done, she notched it into another gear. Wright, meanwhile, was on autopilot and was untouchable. In the end she won with 16:25.78, while Topcu successfully held onto the second position and touched in 16:30.27. Bains was third with 16:31.80, ahead of Fornshell (16:34.26, a school record), Queens sophomore Sarah Reamy (16:34.66), Sundstedt (16:36.79), Drury sophomore Erica Dahlgren (16:45.44), and Lindenwood junior Simone de Rijcke (16:49.77).

All eight of the evening swimmers finished ahead of the top time out of the morning heats (Grand Valley sophomore Melina Goebel, 16:52.72).

Women’s 100 Yard Freestyle – Finals

  • NCAA DII: 48.44 3/11/2017 Theresa Michalak, West Florida
  • Meet: 48.44 3/11/2017 Theresa Michalak, West Florida
  1. Zuzanna Chwadeczko, SR Drury University 49.36
  2. Miranda Yarnell, JR WSCU 49.54
  3. Alexis Divelbiss, SR Wingate 49.82

Drury seniors Vera Johansson and Zuzanna Chwadeczko were the first to turn at the halfway point, leading most of the field by about 3/10, with Oklahoma Baptist sophomore Victoria Fonville trailing the leaders by a tenth. Everything shook out over the second half. Chwadeczko, out in 23.68, came home in 25.68 for 49.36. Even faster on the back half was Western State Colorado junior Miranda Yarnell, who split 23.93/25.61. Wingate senior Alexis Divelbiss slipped past Johansson for third with 49.82. Johansson finished fourth with 49.85.

The rest of the final was made up of Queens’ Wanda Dollmayer (49.99), Mckenzie Stevens (50.23) and Kyrie Dobson (50.34), and Fonville 51.14.

Women’s 200 Yard Backstroke – Finals

  • NCAA DII: 1:54.48 3/11/2017 Hannah Peiffer, Queens (NC)
  • Meet: 1:54.48 3/11/2017 Hannah Peiffer, Queens (NC)
  1. Rachel Helm, SO NMU 1:57.20
  2. Cassandra Wright, FR Sioux Falls 1:57.99
  3. Edda Skoric, SO Northern State 1:58.27

Sioux Falls freshman Cassandra Wright, swimming in lane 7, was first to turn at the 50, followed closely by Oklahoma Baptist sophomore Celina Marquez. Defending champion Rachel Helm of Northern Michigan eased her way to the lead on the second 50, turning with Wright. Northern State sophomore Edda Skoric moved past Marquez into third place at the 100; Lewis freshman Stephanie Palczynski was with the lead crowd, too.

Helm separated herself from the field over the third 50. Behind her, Skoric had moved into the second position, just in front of Wright. While Helm came home to stop the clock at 1:57.20 for the win, Wright poured on the speed over the final 50 and got to the wall just ahead of Skoric, taking second with 1:57.99. Skoric was third with 1:58.27.

Nova S’eastern senior Courtney Deveny was fourth with 1:59.63. Marquez (2:00.76), Rachel Massero of Queens (2:01.48), Palczynski (2:01.78), and West Chester sophomore Georgia Wright (2:01.93) rounded out the final.

Women’s 200 Yard Breaststroke – Finals

  1. Bailee Nunn, SO Drury University 2:10.90
  2. Claire Beaty, SR CSU East Bay 2:12.93
  3. Maggie Melhorn, SR Carson-Newman 2:13.09

Defending champion and meet record-holder Bailee Nunn of Drury took it right out and got off to a half body length lead at the first wall. Claire Beaty of Cal State East Bay and Rachel Taylor of UC San Diego turned together in second place at the 50. By the 100 Nunn was up by a body length over Beaty, Fresno Pacific’s Olga Tovstogan, and Fairmont State senior Marlena Dudek. Nunn kept increasing her lead, while Carson-Newman senior Maggie Melhorn moved up to challenge Beaty.

In the end Nunn won with 2:10.90, while Beaty (2:12.93) succeeded at holding off Melhorn (2:13.09). Fresno Pacific senior Daria Belova moved past Dudek to finish fourth, 2:14.25 to 2:14.54. Tovstogan (2:14.93) took sixth, while Taylor (2:16.98) and Queens freshman Sarah Atkinson (2:17.06) place seventh and eighth.

Women’s 400 Yard Freestyle Relay – Finals

  • NCAA DII: 3:18.75 3/14/2015 Queens (NC) (Castro Ortega, Gordy, Marshall, Arakelian)
  • Meet: 3:18.75 3/14/2015 Queens (NC) (Castro Ortega, Gordy, Marshall, Arakelian)
  1. Queens (NC) 3:18.04
  2. Drury University 3:18.08
  3. Wingate 3:21.34

There’s a reason why championship meets end with the 400 free relay. In this case, it was a nailbiter from start to finish. Drury got the early lead out of lane 1 over top-seeded Queens when Drury’s Nunn outsplit Queens’ Stevens, 49.84 to 50.14. Queens took the lead back at the 200 with Dobson’s 49.57 vs Drury’s 49.98 from Yekaterina Rudenko. The third leg went Queens’ way again, with Dollmayer splitting 48.94 to Chwadeczko’s 49.30. On the last leg, Johansson outsplit Prayson, 48.96 to 49.39, but Drury fell 4/100 short of the crown. Both Queens and Drury came in well under the meet and NCAA Division II record with 3:18.04 and 3:18.08, respectively. Wingate took third in 3:21.34 over Nova S’eastern (3:22.07), Tampa (3:22.82), Fresno Pacific (3:23.70), Lindenwood (3:23.80), and UC San Diego (3:24.08).


                     Women - Team Rankings - Through Event 41                     
  1. Queens (Nc)                     574.5   2. Drury                             401
  3. Nova S'Eastern                    288   4. Fresno Pacific                    228
  5. Oklahoma Baptist                  209   6. Lindenwood                        203
  7. Ucsd                              196   8. Wingate                           186
  9. Carson-Newman                   166.5  10. Cal Baptist                       146
 11. West Chester                      141  12. Tampa                             122
 13. Csu East Bay                      110  14. Simon Fraser                       83
 15. Grand Valley                       81  16. Nmu                                77
 17. Colorado Mesa                      71  18. Florida Southern                   66
 19. Clarion                            62  20. Wayne State                        56
 21. Sioux Falls                        51  22. Saint Leo                          48
 23. Indy                               45  23. West Florida                       45
 25. Truman St.                         39  26. Delta State                        36
 27. Wscu                               35  28. Msu Mankato                        34
 29. St. Cloud St.-W                    32  30. Ship                               24
 31. Bridgeport                         23  32. Liu Post                           22
 33. Bloomsburg                         18  34. Northern State                     16
 35. Msu-Moorhead                       14  35. Fairmont                           14
 37. Mines                              12  37. Lewis                              12
 39. Iup                                10  39. Azusa Pacific                      10
 41. Findlay                             8  42. McKendree                           4
 42. Saginaw Valley                      4  42. Bellarmine                          4
 45. Umsl                                1

Leave a Reply

Notify of

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

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 …

Read More »