OXFORD, Ohio, July 21. JOSH Schneider nearly set a season-best in the men’s 50 free as the Speedo Champions Series sectional meet in Oxford, Ohio got underway tonight at Miami University.
Halime Zulal Zeren of Ohio State Swim Club claimed the first individual title up for grabs tonight, with a win in the women’s 200 back. Zulal Zeren swam a 2:14.98 to top Club Wolverine’s Anna Demonte (2:16.07) by just over a second. Kaitlyn Ferrara, also from Ohio State, came in .06 behind Demonte at 2:16.13. Meanwhile, Rowan Williams of Ohio State clocked in at 1:59.76 to top the men’s 200 back field in the only sub-2:00 swim of the day. Williams swam the race in clean water as his next closest competitor, Club Wolverine’s Robert Zofchak, finished almost five seconds later in 2:04.53. Christopher Depietro of Ohio State claimed third in 2:04.77.
After qualifying fifth in the women’s 50 free this morning, Ashley Volpenhein of the Mason Manta Rays powered by the championship heat to take the win in 26.22, more than four tenths faster than her morning swim. Madeline Frost of Club Wolverine snuck in for second at 26.36, just ahead of top qualifier Annelise Jongekrijg of Ohio State, who slipped to third with a 26.45. In the men’s 50 free, former University of Cincinnati standout Josh Schneider crushed the field with a 22.19, a stellar time that’s just .02 outside his season best of 22.17 from the Charlotte Grand Prix. Austin Caldwell of the Mason Manta Rays held onto his second seed with a 23.40, while Joseph Baumgartner of Redhawk Aquatics rounded out the top three in 23.50.
Ohio State swept the top two spots in the women’s 200 breast final, led by Taylor Vargo in 2:34.95. Amy Bopp posted a 2:35.26 to finish second, as the two swimmers flip-flopped their positions from the morning. Brooke Rowe of Lakeview Aquatic Club took third in 2:39.18. Christopher Cowley kept the ball rolling for Ohio State with a win in the men’s 200 breast. Cowley touched in 2:18.94, just over six-tenths in front of Club Wolverine’s Ryan Fisher (2:19.59). Ross Palazzo of Hudson Explorers swam a 2:20.19 to finish third.
Ohio State’s relay of Kathryn Luchansky, Halime Zulal Zeren, Kaitlyn Ferrara and Aliena Schmidtke dominated the women’s 800 free relay, winning by 10 seconds in 8:24.54 to close out the evening. Alexandra Wooden, Marissa Delgado, Hannah Foster and Josephine Grote of the Cincinnati Marlins came in second in 8:34.15, while Ashley Volpenhein, Sydney Lofquist, Casey Frazier and Elizabeth Troy gave the Mason Manta Rays a third place finish in 8:35.81.
Ohio State Swim Club leads the combined team standings after day one with 431 points. Club Wolverine (329 points) and the Cincinnati Marlins (198 points) are second and third.