Florida International Goes 1-2-3 Twice on Day 2 of CUSA Championships


3 more wins and a school record for the FIU Panthers grew their lead on day 2 of the 2018 Conference USA Championship meet. That brings them up to 5 victories and 3 school records

Their first win also made for their first record: junior Naomi Ruele topped the 50 free in 22.11, which is a new FIU School Record and her 2nd Conference USA title in the event in 3 seasons. That ranks her 24th in the country, and with this being the last weekend of women’s conference meets, that should be enough to lock up an NCAA Championship meet invite for her individually.

The Panthers went 1-2-3 in that 50 free, with Ruele followed by Letizia Bertelli (22.63) and Ally Mayhew (22.81). That, along with a 7th-place finish from freshman Sara Gyertyanffy, earned the 65 points in the event out of 155 available.

While that’s a big score, it wasn’t even their highest-scoring event of the day. It wasn’t even close, in fact. On the 3-meter springboard event, FIU entered 5 divers, and they combined to take the top 5 spots in the race. That scored a whopping 82 points for the Panthers, which is over half of the points available in the event.

Rice, who are currently 2nd in the meet, doesn’t field a diving team, and so diving is what’s going to push this meet from being a closer, but still comfortable, FIU title win to a dominant FIU title win.

The Panthers finished their day with a 1:30.60 win in the 200 free relay, unsurprisingly after their dominance in the individual 50. Ruele split 21.79 on the relay anchor.

Rice won the opening event of the day, with Alicia Caldwell taking the women’s 500 free in 4:45.33. That put her almost 5 seconds ahead of the runner-up: Natalie Clausen from Florida Atlanatic. Rice had their best event in that 50, with 4 finishers in the top 10 and 6 scorers overall.

Marshall, meanwhile, got their first win of the meet in the 200 IM thanks to a 1:59.40 from sophomore Catherine Bendziewicz. She trailed Rice’s Jaecey Parham going into the freestyle leg, but a 27.89 final split for Bendziewicz overcame a 28.68 from Parham for the win.

FIU interviews:

Team Scores – After Day 2

  1. Florida International – 358
  2. Rice – 235
  3. Marshall – 197
  4. North Texas – 141
  5. Florida Atlantic – 124
  6. Old Dominion – 109

Leave a Reply

Notify of

1 Comment
oldest most voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
6 years ago

The 200 FR must have had very safe starts, with those individual 50’s I would have expected 1:28 high or at least 1:29

About Braden Keith

Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder/co-owner of SwimSwam.com. He first got his feet wet by building The Swimmers' Circle beginning in January 2010, and now comes to SwimSwam to use that experience and help build a new leader in the sport of swimming. Aside from his life on the InterWet, …

Read More »