2022 NAIA National Championships: Day 3 Prelims Recap

2022 NAIA National Swimming and Diving Championships

Day three is a busy day with a lot of sprint events – the 100s for each stroke and the 200 free, but it starts off with the “love it or hate it” 400 IM. This may be the toughest day of the week for the competitors to stay focused as the “new meet” smell has started to fade, the fatigue of the journey starts to set in and the anticipation of tomorrow builds as the finale looms. It’s always a challenge to bridge the gap between an impactful start and a strong finish.

In the 400 IM, top seed Marine Lecomte (Keiser) will look to seize another opportunity at an individual title after having the 500 snatched from her grasp last night, but she’ll have to do it with her teammate Alexandra Giourtzidou breathing down her back as the duo are seeded with nearly identical times. Similarly, after narrowly missing a top three finish into last night’s 200 IM, Stephen Gilbert will defend his top seed against a cadre of Keiser men led by returning champ Pol Roch and Marti Ranea Vila.

The women’s 100 butterfly will pit Sterling’s Sydney Schmidt, the top seed, against a pair of Keiser swimmers (Noelia Garzon and Anna Herbst) who are nipping at her seed time. Alberto Garcia (Keiser) has some breathing room sitting atop the psych sheet with a 47 in the men’s butterfly, but there’s a handful of 49ers behind him hoping to strike gold.

SCAD will try for a clean sweep in the Women’s 200 free as Spencer Sheridan, Emily Elz, and Sloan Sizemore head up what figures to be a very well-contested race. Their counterparts on the men’s side, Joel Thatcher and Kristof Monori will no doubt try to go 1-2, but they’ll need to contend with Cumberlands’ Rubin Gonzalez De Oliveira and Milligan’s Andre Bazzano.

Megan Schroeder will have to fend off Olivet Nazarene teammate Allison Pearson and Keiser’s Nikoline Biltoft-Jensen if she hopes to defend her top seed in the 100 breaststroke, while Emerson Zaplatar (Keiser) will aim to crack the meet record with his 100 breaststroke for the men. For backstroke, Lindsey Wilson’s Maaike Broersma appears to be a clear favorite for the women, but after last night’s performance in the 200 IM, it would be no surprise to see Maria Basto (Cumberlands) gunning for the upset. The men’s field features two sub-50s from Gergo Zachar (Keiser) and Alex Marrero (St. Thomas), which should set up nicely for a good race.

All that is fun to consider, but it starts with the heats this morning, where the primary goal is getting a lane tonight.


  • NAIA Record: 4:24.03 – Laurette Hakansson, Drury (1993)
  • 2020 Champion: 4:26.80 – Karla Islas, Olivet Nazarene

Top 8:

  1. Marine Lecomte (Keiser) – 4:31.67
  2. Alexandra Giourtzidou (Keiser) – 4:35.22
  3. Erica Samuel (Indiana Wesleyan) – 4:35.70
  4. Ella Chaisson (Westmont) – 4:35.75
  5. Leyre Antonanzas Fernandez (Saint Ambrose) – 4:35.92
  6. Karlie Rimat (Arizona Christian) – 4:39.05
  7. Noelia Garzon (Keiser) – 4:39.57
  8. Allison Pearson (Olivet Nazarene) – 4:40.01

Noelia Garzon (Keiser) and Emma Rae Phillips (Milligan) took out heat one quickly, leading the way through fly and back, but it was the duo of Erica Samuel (Indiana Wesleyan) and Ella Chaisson (Westmont) who ended up going 1–2 in the heat after pulling even during breaststroke and pulling away in the free. Samuel finished with a 4:35.70, followed quickly by Chaisson’s 4:35.75.

Heat two featured a nice give and take between Alexandra Giourtzidou (Keiser) and Leyre Antonanzas Fernandez (Saint Ambrose) with Giourtzidou eventually pulling away slightly to finish in 4:35.22 to take the heat and the top time.

The final heat started pretty even through butterfly, before top seed Marine Lecomte began to assert herself in the backstroke and leave the field behind. Lecomte would eventually finish with a 4:31.67 to claim the top seed in tonight’s final, while Arizona Christian’s Karlie Rimat laid claim to second, followed by Allison Pearson from Olivet Nazarene.

MEN’S 400 IM

  • NAIA Record: 3:52.02 – Pol Roch, Keiser (2020)
  • 2020 Champion: 3:52.02 – Pol Roch, Keiser

Top 8:

  1. Stephen Gilbert (Milligan) – 3:57.27
  2. Alex Kusik (Keiser) – 4:00.45
  3. Marti Ranea Vila (Keiser) – 4:00.97
  4. Haakon Syrrist (Keiser) – 4:01.70
  5. Pol Roch (Keiser) – 4:02.47
  6. Theodor Myklebusthaug (Keiser) – 4:02.88
  7. Gaetano Zapata (Keiser) – 4:05.87
  8. Brandon Vives (SCAD) – 4:05.91

With only two heats for the men’s, everyone makes finals, but there’s still a shuffling that needs to occur to determine the A and B heats. Keiser men took the top four positions in the first heat of the morning, with Marti Ranea Vila posting a 4:00.97, followed by NAIA record-holder Pol Roch, Theodor Myklebusthaug, and Gaetano Zapata. SCAD’s Brandon Vives contributed a time of 4:05.91 that may just give him a chance at the A final.

Heat two featured top seed Stephen Gilbert (Milligan) surrounded by Keiser’s Alex Kusik, Haakon Syrrist, and Kaleb Harriott. Gilbert took the lead after the first lap and calmly navigated his way to the only time under 4:00 minutes this morning, clocking in at 3:57.27. Kusik touched behind him with a 4:00.45 followed by Syrrist’s 4:01.70. Harriott finished fourth in the heat, but his 4:08 was not enough to retain his A final position, which opens the door to Vives.


  • NAIA Record: 53.70 – Lisa Tixier, Biola (2017)
  • 2020 Champion: 53.99 – Mendy De Rooi, Cumberlands

Top 8:

  1. Sydney Schmidt (Sterling) – 55.64
  2. Anna Herbst (Keiser) – 56.61
  3. Noelia Garzon (Keiser) – 56.82
  4. Eva Garraux (Arizona Christian) – 56.92
  5. Emma McMurray (The Master’s) – 57.02
  6. Ashley Parry (Olivet Nazarene) – 57.46 / Amanda Stromberg (Keiser) – 57.46
  7. Bayley Blackmon (Brenau) – 57.59

Allyse Bell of Midland touched first in the opening heat. Her time of 1:01.58 probably won’t get her into the finals, but it’s the time to beat right now. Heat two begins the circle-seed and Keiser’s Anna Herbst swam a 56.61 to claim the victory and new top time, followed by Emma McMurray and Ashley Parry.

Noelia Garzon, fresh off her 400 IM swim, showed little fatigue en route to a 56.82 to finish first in the third heat, just shy of Herbst’s time from the previous heat. Brenau’s Bayley Blackmon touched second and Greta Gonzalez from Life University rounded out the top three for the heat. Gonzalez was ousted from the A Final, however, as the last heat sent three more swimmers to the championship heat, including Sydney Schmidt, who took the top seed with a 55.64. Eva Garraux followed with a 56.92 and Amanda Stronberg, seeded tenth, matched Ashley Parry’s 57.46 from a previous heat to share 6th place overall.


  • NAIA Record: 46.12 – Daniel Ramirez, Oklahoma Baptist (2015)
  • 2020 Champion: 48.09 – Marcel Nagy, Keiser

Top 8:

  1. Alberto Garcia (Keiser) – 48.04
  2. Gergo Zachar (Keiser) – 49.18
  3. James Camp (Morningside) – 49.61
  4. Wiktor Perkowski (Milligan) – 49.77
  5. Liam Henry (St. Thomas) – 49.80
  6. Mikhi Hassim (Saint Ambrose) – 49.81
  7. Nicholas Kredich (SCAD) – 49.90
  8. Niklas Nyblom (Keiser) – 50.01

Four heats of the men’s butterfly and it began with Nash Perisho of Morningside putting down a 51.94 for the win. Per the psych sheet, it will probably take a 50.9 or better to return tonight, however. Milligan’s Wiktor Perkowski posted a strong 49.77 to take the second heat and claim the current time to beat. He was followed by Miklas Nyblom (50.01) and Kacper Sobieszuk (50.19).

Perhaps inspired by the challenge, heat three produced four more sub-50 swims from Mikhi Hassim, Liam Henry, James Camp, and Gergo Zachar, who touched first with a 49.18. Not to be outdone, top seed Alberto Garcia dominated the final heat with a 48.04, ahead of SCAD’s Miles Kredich, who filled out tonight’s A final lineup.


  • NAIA Record: 1:49.58 – Alex Peters, Concordia (2011)
  • 2020 Champion: 1:52.04 – Spencer Sheridan, SCAD

Top 8:

  1. Timea Aspegren (Keiser) – 1:53.51
  2. Karina Braathen (Keiser) – 1:53.61
  3. Spencer Sheridan (SCAD) – 1:53.93
  4. Harmina te Velthuis (Cumberlands) – 1:54.00
  5. Halle Briner (Olivet Nazarene) – 1:54.46
  6. Emily Elz (SCAD) – 1:54.49
  7. Maggie Blazo (Milligan) – 1:54.51
  8. Stefania Sofouili (Keiser) – 1:54.86

Jaye Farthing posted the fastest time in the opening heat, breaking two minutes with a 1:59.99. Heat two featured Olivia Garrison as she claimed the new best time of the day with a 1:57.18 to get to the wall ahead of her peers. That may bring her back tonight, but we’ll have to see how the circle-seeded heats play out.

Heat three saw Karina Braathan touch first with a 1:53.61, which would have topped the psych sheet and that time puts her squarely in contention for the title tonight. Maggie Blazo finished second with a 1:54.51, followed by Stefania Sofoulis, who clocked a 1:54.86. The heat’s top seed, Sloan Sizemore, fell to fourth place with a 1:55.66, which may ruin the chances of a 1-2-3 SCAD finish tonight.

Swimming in lane two, Timea Aspegren was the story of heat four. She took the race out at a good pace and led the entire way and the other lanes fanned out behind her as she made her way to a top seed time of 1:53.51. Hanne te Velthuis touched in 1:54.00, followed by Halle Briner’s 1:54.46, who edged out Emily Elz for third. Top seed Spencer Sheridan controlled the final heat and secured her spot in the A final tonight with a 1:53.93. That swim does bump teammate Sizemore down to ninth.


  • NAIA Record: 1:34.89 – Joel Ax, SCAD (2017)
  • 2020 Champion: 1:37.00 – Calvin Coetzee, Lindsey Wilson

Top 8:

  1. Joel Thatcher (SCAD) – 1:37.78
  2. Andre Bazzana (Milligan) – 1:40.13
  3. Ruben Gonzalez De Oliveira (Cumberlands) – 1:40.32
  4. Kristof Monori (SCAD) – 1:40.36
  5. Scott Cain (Midland) – 1:40.81
  6. Pol Roch (Keiser) – 1:41.20
  7. Sebastian Escobar (Campbellsville) – 1:41.55
  8. William Birkett (St. Thomas) – 1:41.73

It was Xavier Gutierrez who made his play at the finals tonight, swimming a 1:44.01 in the opening heat, which figures to be a potential qualifying time. In heat two, Tyler King claimed the victory and hit the wall in a new time to beat: 1:43.84. SCAD’s Kristof Monori led the third heat with a 1:40.36, trailed by Fabio Martin Rojo’s 1:41.21 and Guillermo Usechi Elizari’s 1:42.90.

Ruben Gonzalez De Oliveira managed to undercut Monori’s time, winning the fourth heat in a time of 1:40.32. Sebastian Escobar and William Birkett both likely secured their finals swim tonight with swims of 1:41.55 and 1:41.73.

In the final heat, Joel Thatcher swam in relatively calm waters the entire way, flanked by Andre Bazzana and Scott Cain, who finished second and third. Thatcher’s time, and the top seed tonight, was a 1:37.78.


  • NAIA Record: 1:02.09 – Catherine Duquet, SCAD (2012)
  • 2020 Champions: 1:03.24 – Ori Freibach, Keiser

Top 8:

  1. Nikoline Biltoft–Jensen (Keiser) – 1:03.22
  2. Lily Robinson (Keiser) – 1:03.47
  3. Mikayla DePover (St. Thomas) – 1:04.56
  4. Julie Vega (Olivet Nazarene) – 1:04.69
  5. Megan Schroeder (Olivet Nazarene) – 1:05.07
  6. Vivienne Kunkler (Bethel) – 1:05.19
  7. Ori Freibach (Keiser) – 1:05.27
  8. Allison Pearson (Olivet Nazarene) – 1:05.40

The first heat of four was won by Sophia Carneiro, with a time of 1:10.40. Keiser duo Nikoline Biltoft-Jensen and Lily Robinson set the pace for heat two with a 1:03.22 and 1:03.47, respectively. Isabella Song finished third in 1:05.78. Julie Vega and her Olivet Nazarene teammate, Allison Pearson followed that example and went 1-2 in heat three. Vega posted a 1:04.69 and Pearson went 1:05.40.

The final heat went to Mikayla DePover, who swam relatively shoulder to shoulder with Ori Freibach, Vivienne Kunkler, and top seed Megan Schroeder for most of the race. All four will be back for the A Final, but the top time remains with Biltoft-Jensen.


  • NAIA Record: 53.06 – Bryan Haile, Cal Baptist (2009)
  • 2020 Champions: 54.00 – Paulo Dias Ignatio, Jr, WVU–Tech

Top 8:

  1. Emerson Zaplatar (Keiser) – 53.54
  2. Inigo Marina (St. Thomas) – 54.20
  3. Alejandro Evreinoff Salinas (Olivet Nazarene) / Mikolaj Kala (Cumberlands) – 56.04
  4. Theodor Myklebusthaug (Keiser) – 56.10
  5. Tom Higdon (Simpson) – 56.15
  6. Niklas Nyblom (Keiser) – 56.17
  7. Caleb Berrong (Bethel) – 56.31

Tim Tielkemeijer won the first heat for the men with a time of 58.56. Heat two featured a very tight race between Niklas Nyblom, Tom Higdon, and Mikolaj Kala, but it was Kala who secured the win with a 56.04.

Inigo Marina dominated the next heat, winning by almost two seconds with a speedy 54.20. Theodor Myklebusthaug and Caleb Berrong took second and third with low 56s. The final heat gave the top–seeded Emerson Zaplatar a chance to flex, as he threw down a top time of 53.54, rattling the meet record. Alejandro Evreinoff Salinas took second in the heat and tied Kala’s time for third overall.


  • NAIA Record: 52.76 – Cheyenne Coffman, Fresno Pacific (2012)
  • 2020 Champions: 56.80 – Emma Sophie Augustsson, Keiser

Top 8:

  1. Maaike Broersma (Lindsey Wilson) – 55.27
  2. Maria Basto (Cumberlands) – 56.63
  3. Emma Sofie Augustsson (Keiser) – 57.48
  4. Olivia Cummins (Indiana Wesleyan) – 57.60
  5. Tyler Cates (Milligan) – 57.63
  6. Allie Rassenfoss (SCAD) – 58.45
  7. Anna Herbst (Keiser) – 58.46
  8. Eve Thomas (Loyola) – 58.57

It took a 1:00.80 for Annissa Koekemoer to earn the heat win for the opening swim of the women’s bBackstroke event. Heat two came down to the wire as defending champion Emma Sophie Augustsson managed to out-touch Tyler Cates, taking the win in 57.48 to Cates’s 57.63. Eve Thomas took third with a 58.57.

Heat three featured a runaway swim from Maria Basto as she left the field behind en route to a 56.63. Second place honors went to Allie Rassenfoss as her 58.45 was a hair quicker than Anna Herbst’s 58.46. The final heat went to Maaike Broersma in spectacular fashion as she posted a 55.27 to defend her top seed. Olivia Cummins posted a 57.60 to secure her place in the top eight tonight as well.


  • NAIA Record: 46.28 – Daniel Ramirez, Oklahoma Baptist (2014)
  • 2020 Champions: 48.56 – Gio Zachar, SCAD

Top 8:

  1. Gergo Zachar (Keiser) – 49.21
  2. Alex Marrero (St. Thomas) – 49.58
  3. Kaleb Shive (William’s Baptist) – 50.55
  4. Wiktor Perkowski (Milligan) – 50.78
  5. Fynn Kunze (Keiser) – 50.86
  6. Samuel Page (SCAD) – 50.88
  7. William Thilwind (Lindsey Wilson) – 51.00
  8. Jonathan Cowin (Ottawa Arizona) – 51.16

Justin Schaefer’s 53.40 was good enough to win the first heat on the men’s side. Heat two went to Fynn Kunze in a time of 50.86. He was followed by Jonathan Cowin and Nicholas Klenner who both posted low 51s. Alex Marrero, took things to a new level in heat three, breaking the 50-second barrier and winning with a 49.58. William Thilwind finished second in the heat with a 51.00 and Ayden Dusek’s 51.96 placed third. T

he final heat was pretty close until top seed Gergo Zachar launched off the final turn and claimed the top time with a 49.12. He’ll be joined by Kaleb Shive, Wiktor Perkowski, and Samuel Page tonight in the final.


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