Northern Iowa and Missouri State each won two events on night two of the 2016 Missouri Valley Conference Championships. But Southern Illinois leads the conference with a slim three point lead over Missouri State.
Dora Kiss got the night started with a win in the 500 free. This was the fourth year in a row she won the event, the first time anyone in the MVC has ever done that. Kiss missed her meet record from last year but won the event at 4:47.21. Bryn Handley of Southern Illinois was second at 4:47.81 despite her late push to catch Kiss on the last 50. Kelsie Walker of Southern Illinois was third at 4:50.38.
The 200 IM was the most exciting race of the night as Rebecca Amparano of Missouri State came from fourth at the 150 to win at the final touch. Amparano out-touched Courtney Taylor of Illinois State with a 2:02.59 to Taylor’s 2:02.65. Amparano had set the meet record in this morning’s prelim session with a 2:02.23. Missouri State’s Lauren Pavel was third at 2:03.41 after winning last year.
In the 50 free, it was another exciting finish with Molly Lembezeder of Northern Iowa claiming the win with a 23.16. Loretta Stelnicki of Missouri State finished in second at 23.44 and Northern Iowa’s Crystal Florman was third at 23.45.
Northern Iowa used their strength in the 50 free to win the 200 free relay at 1:33.41. Florman (23.49), Autumn Roepsch (23.46), Rachel Siebenaller (23.63) and Lembezeder (22.83) won the relay backing up the 200 medley relay they won last night. Missouri State came in second with a 1:33.95 and Evansville was third with a 1:35.17 thanks to a swift anchor by Michaela Kent (23.10).
Southern Illinois leads the team standings with 284 just ahead of Missouri State with 281. Northern Iowa is in third with 222.
It will be interesting to see what happens tomorrow as Friday is the defining moment for a lot of teams. The team standings are cramped right now but everyone will start to drift apart tomorrow. The 400 IM, 100 fly, 200 free, 100 breast and 100 back will be on the docket in the morning and the 400 medley relay will also be tomorrow night.