Liberty Tops Campbell 171-120 in Season Opener

Liberty’s Alicia Finnigan, Prudence Rooker, and Kristin VanDeventer each picked up double wins to help Liberty earn their first victory of the 2015-16. Their opponents, the Campbell women, had a strong showing from their 200 freestylers, with Michelle Case and Sindija Silina finishing 1st and 2nd. Liberty won the meet with a final score of 171 to 120.

Liberty:

BUIES CREEK, N.C. – Liberty swimming & diving opened the 2015-16 campaign with a 171-120 victory over Campbell, Saturday at Johnson Aquatic Center.

The Lady Flames (1-0) have won each of their last six meetings with the Camels (0-1). This marks the second season in a row which Liberty has begun with a win at Campbell. These two teams will meet again on Jan. 15, when Campbell visits the LaHaye Aquatic Center.

For the meet, Liberty won two relays and 10 individual events, including six events in which the Lady Flames took both first and second. Campbell came away with three relay wins and two individual-event victories.

Liberty’s Alicia Finnigan (100 fly, 200 fly), Prudence Rooker (100 breaststroke, 100 free) and Kristin VanDeventer (500 free, 1000 free) won two events each. Kendall Hough won the 100 back, while Rachel Hoeve took first place in the 50 free, Victoria Tschoke earned the 200 backstroke victory and Morgan Noonan won the 200 breaststroke.

The Lady Flames opened meet with a 1-2 showing in the 200 medley relay. Liberty’s quartet of Hough, Ricki Lee Hodges, Natalie Beale and Rooker clocked a winning time of 1:48.52.

Liberty’s 400 medley relay of Tschoke, Morgan Weigner, Finnigan and Chelsea Pond narrowly edged out Campbell, 4:02.10 to 4:02.17 for the win.

VanDeventer swam 10:31.96 over 1000 yards to claim victory. She later earned her second win, taking first in the 500 free in 5:11.59. Ashlee Sall followed in third at 5:18.00.

Rooker posted her first of two wins on the day, touching the wall first in 1:06.87 for the 100 breaststroke. Anna Dickinson earned second in 1:07.91. Rooker then led another 1-2 Liberty finish in the 100 free, winning in 53.23 while teammate Rachel Hoeve placed second with a 54.34 clocking.

Finnigan, in her first collegiate meet, opened by swimming 2:06.94 to win the 200 fly. Her time of 2:06.94 is ranked fifth on Liberty’s all-time top five. Hannah Wakeley touched second, in 2:09.37. Finnigan later won the 100 fly in 58.06, while teammate Ashley Mauzy finished third, at 1:00.11.

Liberty claimed the top two places in the 100 back, led by Hough’s winning time of 57.26. Tschoke came in second with a 58.33 effort.

Hoeve earned the 50 free victory in 24.62, with Hough (25.28) taking third.

Tschoke followed up her second-place finish in the 100 back by winning the 200 back in 2:05.39.

Noonan captured the 200 breaststroke in 2:26.94, while Dickinson’s 2:27.26 was good for second place.

Campbell won the 400 free relay in 3:36.49, while Liberty’s Sall, Hodges, Elizabeth Magnusson and Shelby Black placed second in 3:37.71.

The Camels posted a 1-2 finish in the 200 free, led by Michelle Case’s 1:56.23. Liberty’s Pond came in third with a time of 1:57.64.

With Liberty’s victory secure, the Lady Flames swam the last two events as exhibitions. Liberty posted the top two times in the 200 individual medley, with Rooker swimming 2:09.11 and Finnigan clocking 2:10.81.

Liberty will head to Atlanta, Ga., for a tri-meet against Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets and the Penn State Nittany Lions, next Friday at 4 p.m. The meet will be held at the Georgia Tech Aquatic Center, the facility that will serve as host for the 2016 NCAA Swimming & Diving Championships.

Campbell:

BUIES CREEK, N.C. – Liberty claimed 12 of 16 events to top Campbell 171-120 Saturday at the Johnson Aquatic Center in the season opener for both teams.

The Flames owned a 27-9 edge after taking the 200 medley relay and the 1,000 freestyle before sophomores Michelle Case (1:56.23) and Sindija Silina (1:57.13) finished one-two in the 200 free. Cristina Pereda (2:01.32) also picked up a point for CU, finishing fifth in the event.

Case also took second in the 50 free with a 24.90, just behind Liberty’s Rachel Hoeve. Campbell also narrowly took runner-up in the 400 medley relay, with Liberty’s 4:02.10 just clipping the Camels’ 4:02.17.

Freshman Karah Sizemore (2:07.35) and sophomore Geena Squartino (5:15.98) placed second in the 200 back and 500 free, respectively, while Caroline Clark‘s 58.83 finished just behind Liberty’s Alicia Finnigan at 58.06 in the 100 butterfly.

Campbell took 46 of the final 50 points to bring the score to 171-120, taking the day’s final event, the 200 freestyle relay, with a 1:38.80.

The Camels will head to the All-North Carolina Invitational net Saturday, Oct. 2 in Greensboro, N.C. CU returns home Oct. 24 against UNC Asheville.

Swimming news courtesy of Liberty Swimming and Campbell Swimming.

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About Lauren Neidigh

Lauren Neidigh

Lauren Neidigh is a former NCAA swimmer at the University of Arizona and the University of Florida. She got her M.S. in Criminology from Florida State and seems exceptionally confused about which team she should cheer for during the college football season. Lauren is currently a coach at Loggerhead Aquatics …

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