Editorial coverage sponsored by SpeedoUSA
By Ben Safran
SHENANDOAH, Texas, March 22. THE penultimate day of competition is complete at the NCAA Division III Championships, and the Kenyon Lords and Emory Lady Eagles are in position to capture the team titles.
At the conclusion of Day three, the Emory Lady Eagles continue to hold a strong lead. With 428.5 points they are 50 points ahead of Kenyon (375) heading into the final day. Denison (281) and Williams (254) continue to battle for third place while Johns Hopkins, behind a strong relay, is in 5th place.
The Kenyon Lords (355.5) are still holding off Denison (308) at the end of the 3rd day of competition. They are looking to reclaim the team title after the past two years have gone to Denison. MIT stays in the picture with 275 points. Johns Hopkins (240) and Emory (220) are both comfortably ahead of the 6th place Stevens (135).
Kenyon's Hannah Saiz needed help getting out of the pool, but only after she tore up the field winning by an easy four seconds ahead of her next closest competitor (1:57.42). Michelle Howell, Denison, picked up another silver with a 2:01.53, and Nina Zook led four Emory swimmers making it back to the night swim coming in fourth in 2:01.86. IWU's Katherine McHuge placed third in 2:01.65.
Miller Douglas, Emory, held off the 400 IM Champion, Hugh “Alex” Anderson, to win the 200 fly by .07 seconds with a 1:46.64 to 1:46.71 triumph. MIT was the only team with multiple swimmers finishing 8th, 11th, and 13th. Whitman's Karl Mering snared third-place honors in 1:47.50.
Celia Oberholzer of Kenyon, who led off the winning 400 medley relay last night, set the NCAA record while winning gold in a time of 53.46. That broke the record of 53.85 held by Brittany Sasser since 2008. Emory team captain Anna Dobbin won the consolation heat in 54.84 while her teammate Sadie Nennig finished 7th in the final heat. Hamilton's Margaret Rosenbaum (54.18) and Johns Hopkins' Taylor Kitayama (54.57) took second and third.
In the closest race all meet, Dylan Davis of John Hopkins was able to beat Sean Chabot, Denison, to the wall by .01, 48.62 to 48.63. The difference between 1st and 6th was a little more than two tenths of a second! Connecticut's Samuel Gill earned third in 48.65. Kenyon was the only team with more two competitors in the final two heats.
Emory's Eagles continued to overwhelm with numbers as Kylie McKenzie finished 6th as well as Renee Rosenkranz and Elizabeth Aronoff going 1-2 in the consolation. The final heat belong to UW-Whitewater's Amy Spaay, as the sophomore set a new meet record with an easy win, touching at 1:00.85. Calvin's Elizabeth Counsell placed second in 1:02.79, while Stevens' Brittany Geyer earned third in 1:03.09.
All night the top women were able to pull away from the field, but the men's races all came down to close finishes. Simas Jarasunas, Stevens, won gold going 54.57 and Colby Kubat, St.Olaf, went 54.96 earning silver. Occidental's Steven Van Deventer snared bronze in 55.21.
Danica Roskos, Senior, from TCNJ took home gold in the women's one-meter diving event with a final score of 466.65 points. This was her third straight year as NCAA champion in the one-meter. Kaitlyn Linsmayer, Amherst, was 2nd, and Maria Zarka, Kenyon took home Bronze.
800 Freestyle Relay
Johns Hopkins anchor Anastasia Bogdanovski split a 1:47.42 to lead the Blue Jays to Gold in the 800 Free Relay (7:19.14). Kenyon (7:20.84), without Saiz, was unable to hold off Hopkins in the last 200, but did touch out, Emory (7:20.85) who walked away in third.
The male Blue Jays repeated their female counterpart dominance in the 800 free relay. They led start to finish to become NCAA champions and break the NCAA record by more than a second in a final time of 6:29.27. Dylan Coggin and Nicholas Schmidt both split under 1:37 to bring it home for Johns Hopkins. Kenyon came in 2nd and Denison was 3rd.