Wright Makes History; JMU Women and UNCW Men Lead After 2020 CAA Champs Day 2

2020 COLONIAL ATHLETIC ASSOCIATION CONFERENCE CHAMPIONSHIPS

  • Wednesday, February 19-Saturday, February 22
  • Christiansburg Aquatics Center, Christiansburg, Virginia (Eastern Time Zone)
  • Defending Champion: James Madison women, William & Mary Men
  • Live Video (requires subscription)
  • Live Results
  • Championship Central

It was a historic second day of swimming at the 2020 CAA Championships, as two conference records fell, including one at least that has national-level implications.

The biggest story, of course, was W&M senior Colin Wright‘s performance. He went 19.17 in the prelims of the 50 free, 19.18 in finals, and then blasted a 18.98 leading off W&M’s 200 free relay. You can read more about Wright’s day here, but suffice it say that Wright’s time ties with Cal’s Ryan Hoffer for the fastest mark in the country this season, and would’ve finished 5th at the 2019 NCAAs. The Tribe’s 200 free relay featured not only Wright’s leadoff, but also a sub-19 anchor from teammate Jack Doherty, as W&M won in 1:17.42.

That time sets a new CAA record and would’ve finished 6th at the SEC Championships yesterday, finishing ahead of teams with a strong national presence like Missouri and Georgia. It’s also under the NCAA ‘provisional’ standard of 1:17.86, although W&M would still need to get a qualifying standard to swim at NCAAs, either by time trialing in this event (would need a 1:17.17) or another event. W&M has not had a male swimmer make NCAAs since the 1960s.

That 200 free relay capped off a complete sweep for the Tribe men. Chris Balbo got the ball rolling with a 4:29.74 victory in the 500 free, as W&M took three of the top four spots, and teammate Ben Skopic set a CAA meet record with a 1:45.33. W&M started the day down 54 to UNCW due to the Tribes’s lack of divers, but now is only 7.5 points back with two full days to go.

On the women’s side, each of the four swimming events was won by a different school. JMU’s Julianna Jones won the 500 free in 4:45.16, ending a two year winning streak by Megan Bull of W&M, who came in 2nd in 4:48.37. Towson senior Megan Cowan won the 200 IM in 2:00.52. The 50 free saw another wining streak snapped, as UNCW junior Evan Arsenault ended Northeastern senior Megan Clark‘s reign in the event, out touching Clark 22.34 to 22.44.

W&M came away with the win in a tight 200 free relay. The Tribe won in 1:32.36, narrowly ahead of both JMU (1:32.61) and UNCW (1:36.62). The Dukes, however, had racked up big points in the 3m diving event; Hope Byrum led a JMU sweep of the top three finishers, and JMU had a total of five divers in the top nine, helping them widen their lead to nearly 50 points over W&M at the end of the day.

Women’s Scores Through Day 2

  1. JMU – 262
  2. W&M – 213.5
  3. Towson – 196
  4. Delaware – 169.5
  5. UNCW – 156
  6. Drexel – 145
  7. Northeastern – 96

Men’s Scores Through Day 2

  1. UNCW – 302
  2. W&M – 294.5
  3. Drexel – 202
  4. Towson – 163.5
  5. Delaware – 129

1
Leave a Reply

1 Comment threads
0 Thread replies
0 Followers
 
Most reacted comment
Hottest comment thread
1 Comment authors
newest oldest most voted
Swimgeek

Looks like W&M just scored their first NCAA swimmer since the 60s. Wow