Lindenwood’s synchronized swimming team pulled off a rare threepeat over the weekend, winning its third consecutive U.S. National Championship title with a clean sweep of the solo, duet and team technical and free events. Led by Individual High Point champion senior Alyson Haylor, LU became the first program to pull off three consecutive sweeps since Santa Clara in 2004, and is the only collegiate program ever to sweep three consecutive U.S. Nationals in the 67-year history of the sport.
“Lindenwood is leading a transformation in the synchro world toward contemporary choreography, challenging the status quo, and really demonstrating how much fun good synchro can be,” said coach Lori Eaton, who earned national Coach of the Year honors once again. “We keep the team first and foremost, everyone contributes in our system, and I think that’s what has led us methodically toward success in and out of the water.”
Haylor and fellow senior Daniela Garmendia went 1-2 in solo. As the youngest of the top five athletes, Haylor’s “Bird Set Free” earned a 75.933, and boosted her to a 2.82 lead over her teammate.
Haylor and freshman Kyra Hoevertsz finished first in duet tech by 1.3 points, and teamed with sophomore Sarah Rodriquez to finish a close second in the duet free final. When added together, the three Lions narrowly won gold by a 0.280 margin over Garmendia and Marialaura Villasana – 149.6618 to 149.3818. LU’s Carol Alonso and Maria Vasquez made it a clean sweep in duet, capturing bronze with a final composite mark of 141.4819.
LU’s “Hip Hop 2.0” routine set to songs by Missy Elliott, Lil’ Jon and DJ Snake proved to be the judges’ and crowd favorite, winning gold by an 11-point margin with a final composite mark of 151.9593. Swimming for LU were Haylor, Hoevertsz, Rodriguez, Ross, Vasquez, Villasana, and Kirsten Hutzler, with Alonso and Sommerlyn Stevens in tech.
“Synchro is as much about physical endurance and creative expression as it is about heart and mind,” said Haylor. “LU trains athletes to swim with their heart, to put themselves out there for all to see, to be confident and unforgiving with our passion and our ability. I’m happy with my senior campaign and that I could contribute to extending LU’s streak.”
Placements at U.S. Nationals are a combination of technical and free routine scores. In addition to individual event medals, U.S. Nationals also employs individual and team high point scoring, where routines earns points for placement, much like a track meet.
The meet brings to a close the Lions’ 2017 season, and the LU careers of seniors Haylor, Garmendia and Hutzler. For more information on the Lion synchro team, visit www.lindenwoodlionssls.com.
U.S. National Championships
April 4-7, Tucson, Ariz.
1, Lindenwood University, Alyson Haylor, 73.2212
2, Lindenwood University, Daniela Garmendia, 71.5314
3, U of F Gator Synchro, Yoojung Rhee, 70.5344
Solo Final (Aggregate)
1, Lindenwood University, Alyson Haylor, 149.1545
2, Lindenwood University, Daniela Garmendia, 146.3314
3, U of F Gator Synchro, Yoojung Rhee, 143.8011
1, Lindenwood University, Kyra Hoevertsz/Alyson Haylor, 73.9618
2, Lindenwood University, Daniela Garmendia/Marialaura Villasana, 72.6818
3, Lindenwood University, Carol Alonso/Maria Vasquez, 68.3152
Duet Final (Aggregate
1, Lindenwood University, Kyra Hoevertsz/Sarah Rodriguez, 149.6618
2, Lindenwood University, Daniela Garmendia/Marialaura Villasana, 149.3818
3, Lindenwood University, Carol Alonso/Maria Vasquez, 141.4819
1, Lindenwood University (Stevens, Garmendia, Haylor, Hoevertsz, Hutzler, Vasquez, Villasana), 73.9093
2, University of Arizona (Chadwick, Dixon, Hafner, McKinney, Pinto, Schmisseur, Stallworth, Stallworth), 68.1587
3, Indy Synchro (Crane, Hernandez, Lehmann, Powell, Ronnau, Woodahl), 65.6268
Team Final (Aggregate)
1, Lindenwood University (Haylor, Hoevertsz, Hutzler, Rodriguez, Ross, Vasquez, Villasana), 151.9593
2, University of Arizona (Chadwick, Dixon, Hafner, McKinney, Pinto, Schmisseur, Stallworth, Stallworth), 140.6254
3, Indy Synchro (Crane, Hernandez, Lehmann, Powell, Ronnau, Woodahl), 134.6268
News courtesy of Lindenwood Athletics.