Colorado Jumps Out To Strong First Night at ECCs; Sarah Bateman Swift for Florida

For full coverage of the ECC Club Championships, check out our event coverage page.

By Cici Zhang

ATLANTA, Georgia, April 19. THE first day of the 2013 East Coast Swim Club Championships got off to a fast start as five meet records were broken. Icelandic Olympian Sarah Bateman, represented Florida with an unbelievable 200-yard freestyle split of 1:50.67. However, leading the meet with 656 points, Colorado proved itself to be a strong force once again. Florida and Missouri following close behind with 464 and 311 points, respectively.

The Colorado women dominated today's events. They started the meet by breaking their own 4×200- yard freestyle relay set only last year with an 8:01.28. Mattie Nobles, a senior at University of Colorado continued to dominate the 400-yard individual medley finishing with a 4:45.06 and out touched teammate Zoe Gossett. Gossett, however, came back with a huge win in the 200-yard butterfly with 2:14.18 leading the field by more than 4 seconds. Senior Whitney Fletcher also took home a title in the 200-yard breaststroke with a 2:27.27, one second of the record. Junior Kate Booth took home 1st in the 500-yard freestyle with a 5:21.09.

Sierra Higinbotham of James Madison University was able to sneak in and claim the title in the 200-yard backstroke as well as the University of Florida women's relay team of the 4×100-yard medley relay who crushed Colorado by over 5 seconds.

On the men's side, Florida took over and claimed the title in both relays and Will Walter showing impressive swims by claiming titles in the 400-yard individual medley with a huge lead of 7 seconds with a 4:10.42 and setting the meet record in the 200-yard butterfly with a 1:53.40. Colorado also swam well following close behind in both the 4×200-yard freestyle relay and 4×100-yard medley relay. Sophomore Bryan Bonack took home the title for Colorado in the 200-yard backstroke with a 1:51.87 and senior Toshi Hirabayashi with the 500-yard freestyle with a 4:45.26. Penn State sneaked in with a victory in the 200-yard breaststroke by Andrew Smiddy.

Top 5 team scores through day 1:

Combined: Colorado 656, Florida 464, Missouri 311, Connecticut 276, Penn State 245