Conference USA Championships Day Three: FIU Extends Lead to 126

FIU swimmer Stephanie Hussey Photo Courtesy: Florida International Athletics

With three days of the Conference USA Championships at McAuley Aquatic Center in Atlanta completed, the women of Florida International University have extended their lead over Rice University in their quest for a sixth consecutive Conference USA Championship title. Florida International now leads by 126 points over Rice, 712.5-586.5. FIU was led by two gold medal performances from sophomore Michaela Trnkova, and three podium finishes from junior Julia Miranda. Florida Atlantic follows in a distant third with 295, and Marshall, University of North Texas, and Old Dominion continue to fight for fourth. The three are separated by a mere 30 points. Marshall stands in fourth (242.5), University of North Texas in fifth behind Marshall by just 7.5 points (235), and Old Dominion rounds out the field in sixth place (212.5). Tonight marked the contest of six individual events (five swimming and one diving) and one relay.

Day 1 Recap

Day 2 Recap

Day 3 Results

Conference USA Championships: 400 Individual Medley

In team scoring, the 400 individual medley belonged to Rice, who placed five into the A final. However individually, the event belonged to Florida International junior Stephanie Hussey, who dominated the event from start to finish to take the win by over four seconds with an NCAA ‘B’ cut time of 4:16.30. Rice teammates Hannah Sumbera (4:20.45), Sarah Nowaski (4:20.71), Erin Vance (4:21.68), and Claire Therien (4:22.03) took places two through five for the Owls. Old Dominion sophomore Jacqueline Tinneny took sixth in 4:24.14, Rice freshman Virginie Qian was seventh in 4:24.60 and Florida Atlantic senior Dianca Garbett was eighth in 4:26.23. Old Dominion freshman Rylee Moss narrowly took the B final in 4:25.22, finishing just 0.12 ahead of Rice freshman Shannon Campbell, and Rice classmate Adalyn Armistead took the C with a 4:27.73.

400 IM

Conference USA Championships: 100 Butterfly

Florida International placed five into the A final, however, it was Rice freshman Madison Howe who took the event with an NCAA ‘B’ cut time of 53.56. Florida International teammates Julia Miranda (53.87), Sara Gyertyanffy (53.95), and Kasia Kolodziej (54.14) placed second through fourth and were followed by Marshall senior Hannah Robins (54.27), Rice junior Brittany Bui (54.37), and Florida International teammates Emily Cordovi (54.79), and Kelsie Campbell (55.28). Rice took the top three spots of the B final, lead by junior Becca Brandt winning the B in 54.92. Florida International sophomore Chloe Hampson took the C final in 56.70.

100 Fly

Conference USA Championships: 1 Meter Diving

Florida International again dominated diving with five of the eight A finalists. Florida International freshman Mandy Song won her second diving event with a score of 326.25 from the 1 meter board, a nearly 20 point victory. Florida Atlantic junior Malvina Catalano Gonzaga placed second with a score of 306.50 and was followed by Florida International teammates Rachel Foord (293.65) and Maha Gouda (292.00), Florida Atlantic freshman Alicia Mora Herencia (283.90), Florida International senior Britanny Haskell (273.85), Marshall freshman Lauren Henderson (264.70), and Florida International senior Brooke Bouchard (251.15). Meghan Miller of University of North Texas took the B final with a score of 261.35.

1 mtr diving

Conference USA Championships: 200 Freestyle

Florida International and Rice each placed three into the A final, with Marshall representing the other two spots in the championship final. After a narrowly close 150 yards of racing, Rice sophomore Marta Cano Minarro pulled away with a 26.82 split in the final 50 to earn the Conference USA Championship in the 200 freestyle with an NCAA ‘B’ cut time of 1:46.84. The entire field of eight A finalists were separated by a mere 1.17 seconds entering the final 50 of the race. Florida International freshmen Lamija Medosevic (1:48.05), and 50 freestyle champion Jasmine Nocentini (1:48.19) placed second and third. They were followed very shortly behind by Rice juniors Lindsay Mathys (1:48.22) and 500 freestyle champion Ellery Parish (1:48.31) for fourth and fifth place respectively. Marshall teammates Darby Coles (1:48.47) and Catherine Bendziewicz (1:49.50) followed in sixth and seventh and were followed by Florida International freshman Eriana Temperino (1:50.34). University of North Texas teammates Leigh Faires McGee and London Farris both broke the 1:50 barrier to take first and second in the B final with times of 1:49.60 and 1:49.96. Old Dominion freshman Summer Miln took the C in 1:53.14.

200 Free Pt 1

200 Free Pt 2

Conference USA Championships: 100 Breaststroke

The race was dominated by a trio of Florida International swimmers, Sara GyertyanffyTaylor Grabenhorst, and Delaine Goll, who swept the podium of the 100 breaststroke while all earning NCAA ‘B’ cuts. Gyertyanffy narrowly took the title in 1:00.77, barely touching out teammates Grabenhorst and Goll, who were only separated by 0.06 seconds for second and third with times of 1:00.93 and 1:00.99, respectively. The three were followed by Rice teammates Nicole Limberg (1:02.02), Phillis Range (1:02.14), and Sini Koivu (1:02.83) for fourth, fifth and sixth place. Rounding out the championship final were Florida Atlantic senior Timah Westbrook in seventh (1:03.36), and Old Dominion freshman Tara Enneking in eighth (1:03.49). Old Dominion junior Paige Romine took the B final in 1:03.92, and Florida International senior Alexa Bryant won the C final in 1:06.23.

100 Breast Pt 1

100 Breast Pt 2

Conference USA Championships: 100 Backstroke

The final individual event of the third evening of Conference USA Championships belonged to Florida International sophomore Michaela Trnkova, who led a 1-2 finish for the Panthers by winning the event by 0.20 and just earning an NCAA ‘B’ cut with a winning time of 53.82. Junior teammate Julia Miranda took home her second silver medal of the evening with a time of 54.02. Following after were Marshall senior Jordyn O’Dell in third (54.30), Jowita Sienczyk of University of North Texas in fourth (54.73)Florida Atlantic junior Abby Marshall in fifth (54.74), Rice teammates Zoe Spitz (55.14) and Kate Nezelek (55.65) in sixth and seventh, and Florida International sophomore Kelsie Campbell earning her second eighth-place finish of the evening with a time of 55.76. Florida International freshman Emily Cordovi won the B final in 55.45, and Old Dominion freshman Peri Farling took the C final with a 56.25.

100 Back

Conference USA Championships: 400 Medley Relay

Florida International easily won the 400 medley relay, with sophomore Michaela Trnkova (54.28), senior Taylor Grabenhorst (1:00.80), junior Julia Miranda (53.75), and freshman Lamija Medosevic (48.79). The Panther victory marked the second gold medal of the night for Trnkova, the second medal of the evening for both Grabenhorst and Medosevic, and the third medal of the night for Julia Miranda, who had previously taken silver in both the 100 backstroke and 100 butterfly. Seniors Jordyn O’Dell (54.46), Catherine Bendziewicz (1:02.35), and Hannah Robins (54.37) teamed with junior anchor Darby Coles (48.87) to earn silver for Marshall University in 3:40.05. They were followed by Rice in third (3:41.92), University of North Texas in fourth (3:44.82), Florida Atlantic in fifth (3:45.17), and Old Dominion in sixth (3:48.74).

The final day of Conference USA Championships begins on Saturday, February 29 at 10:30am ET with the start of the final morning of swimming preliminaries. Platform diving prelims are slated to begin at 12pm ET, a 1650 freestyle session for all but the last heat will be at 3pm ET, and the Conference USA Championships will end with the final night of finals at 6pm ET. Finals can be streamed online here.

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