FAIRFAX, Virginia, February 15. GEORGE Mason's men's swimming & diving team now stands in first place at the Colonial Athletic Association Championships after two days of competition with a score of 211, while William & Mary leads on the women's side (234). Mason's women's squad is in third place (197.5), just one point shy of second place UNC Wilmington.
Senior Tom Koucheravy tallied 30 points for Mason as he captured the 500-yard freestyle title in a CAA Championship record time of 4:21.42. Russell Smith of James Madison placed first in the 200 IM (1:50.10), while Eric Pinno (Towson) took the gold medal home for the 50 free (20.62) and Eric Knight (Mason) finished third in the same event (20.72). Ryan Metzker also earned a first place finish for the Patriots as he posted a score of 313 in the 1-meter diving event.
It was another outstanding day for the Tribe women's swimming team, as it captured three gold medals in four events, set a pair of school records, and set records for the meet and the pool. In the team standings, William and Mary vaulted past George Mason to lead the Championships with 234 points.
The 400 medley relay team of junior Meredith David (Somerdale, N.J.), senior captain Kelly Reitz (Chesapeake, Va.), freshman Erin Welshofer (Charlotte, N.C.), and senior captain Marnie Rognlien (Nokesville, Va.) swam the second-fastest time in school history, 3:47.48, to set a new CAA meet record and the team's third pool record of the last two days. David swam 56.97 in the backstroke leg to reset her own school record. The win ties Reitz and David with Ruth Anne Miller and George Collins for the most conference championships in school history with five. It was the fourth conference title for Rognlien, and the second for Welshofer.
In the 200 IM, freshman Courtney Alles (Manassas Park, Va.) won her first conference title in a touch-out, timing 2:06.09 to win the event and move into second all-time in school history. Sophomore Whitney Pezza (Warrenton, Va.) also medaled, taking third in a personal-best 2:07.45, the fourth-fastest performance all-time at the College. Reitz finished eighth with a time of 2:08.81.
Freshman Katie Radloff (Arlington, Va.) won the 50 free after outsprinting the field in the final 25 yards, setting a school record by finishing in 22.92, an NCAA "B" qualifying time. Rognlien also competed in the championship heat, finishing sixth in 23.72.
Sophomore Marina Falcone (Potomac, Md.) swam below five minutes in the 500 free once again, taking fourth in 4:58.02. Freshman Jill Hamilton (Bethesda, Md.) finished sixth in 5:02.25, just shy of the personal-best she swam in the morning qualifying.
In the consolation finals of the 200 IM, freshman Suzanne Figuers (Cary, N.C.) swam 2:09.62 to finish 12th overall, just ahead of teammate and fellow freshman Laura Herrmann (Fairfax Station, Va.), who was 16th in 2:10.98.
The third day of the four day competition will begin at 10 a.m. with preliminary action on Friday, while finals begin at 6 p.m. at the Aquatic & Fitness Center on the campus of George Mason.