Day 2 in Books at Empire 8 Championships

Photo Courtesy: Empire 8

The second day of competition at the Empire 8 Conference Swimming & Diving Championships has come to a close.

Only 1.58 seconds separated the top three teams in the 200 Freestyle Relay. Stevens won for the third straight season, touching the wall in an NCAA B cut time of 1:23.16. Tommy Wolinski, Vinny Tavoletti, Ethan Gehenio and Joshua Lefeber combined for the win. Ithaca’s time of 1:24.27 earned second and Hartwick College took third (1:24.74).

For the first time in E8 history a Nazareth swimmer claimed the 400 individual medley. Sophomore Alex Lapoint claimed the title with a B cut time of 4:04.32 as he out-touched Hartwick junior Brendan Quinn by .38 seconds (4:04.70 – Bcut time). Hartwick senior Ben Detar was third in 4:08.66.

The top three times in the 100 Butterfly finals tonight came from the Stevens Ducks. Lefeber earned his second individual title of the meet after winning the 200 IM on Wednesday night. Lefeber captured the 100 Butterfly conference crown in a time of 50.61. Travoletti was second (50.65) and Brennan Maxwell was third (50.93).

Freshman Aron Zhang became the second straight Hartwick athlete to win the 200 Freestyle. His 1:42.46 was .45 seconds faster than runner-up Wolinski from Stevens (1:42.91) and almost two full seconds better than Alfred sophomore Alec Toth (1:44.33)

Ending the night was the 400 Medley Relay and Stevens won the title for the second straight year and third time in the last four years. The Duck quartet of Ravi Sun, Lefeber, Tavoletti and Wolinski swam a Bcut time of 3:21.94. Hartwick finished in 3:26.61 and Ithaca was third (3:29.41).

Ithaca College and Stevens Institute of Technology remain at the top of the standings after the second day of competition at the Empire 8 Conference Women’s Swimming & Diving Championships.

In the 200 Freestyle Relay, Stevens won for the eighth consecutive season. The Ducks’ team, which consists of Courtney Jones, Katlyn Christenson, Jenn Rutledge and Danielle Caruso finished in 1:37.42, 0.62 seconds ahead of second-place Ithaca and 1.31 seconds in front of third-place Hartwick.

The 400 Individual Medley finals produced the first E8 champion from Hartwick since 2004. Senior Imma Rutigliano claimed the title with a Bcut performance of 4:30.24, a full seven seconds in front of second-place Kimberly Pedrotti of Nazareth (4:37.66). The 2014 champ Elizabeth Heinback of Stevens was third (4:38.42).

Stevens sophomore Sarah Jurczyk won the 100 Butterfly for the second straight year with a B-cut time of 55.55 which also set a new E8 meet record. Stevens freshman Caroline Shusta clocked a time of 1:00.08.

Danielle Caruso won her second title of this season’s championships and third straight crown in the 200 Freestyle event. Her B cut time of 1:52.92 bested teammate Courtney Jones (1:54.91) who took second and Hartwick’s Rachel Bellis (1:55.31) in third.

Ithaca won the 1-meter diving event for the sixth consecutive season. The top mark of 434.25 went to sophomore Anna Belson and teammate Katie Helly posted a score of 4:23.30. Ithaca’s Alyssa Wishart scored a 405.50 and Nazerth’s Desiree Kline complied a mark of 388.

The evening’s races came to a close with a nail-bitter in the 400 Medley Relay. Ithaca finished .03 hundreths of a second ahead of Stevens. Grace Ayer, Sam Reilly, Megan Zart and Erin Hackett combined for the victory in 3:55.25 as Stevens clocked a time of 3:55.28. Hartwick took third (4:00.50).

Day three begins Friday with preliminaries at 10 a.m. and finals at 6 p.m.

Empire 8 contributed this report.