George Washington Men, Richmond Women Win at Atlantic 10 Championships

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Photo Courtesy: Atlantic 10 Athletics

Shy of an opening relay DQ, it took until Day 4 of the Atlantic 10 Championships for a men’s swimming race that didn’t feature a George Washington swimmer in the top two. It was that dominant of a performance from the Colonials on the way to their fourth title.

A much more balanced women’s meet produced Richmond as its champion for the 16th time and first since 2017. The Spiders pulled away at SPIRE Institute, leaving Duquesne and Davidson to battle it out for second.

Atlantic 10 Championships

Men’s

  1. George Washington 828.5
  2. George Mason 564
  3. Davidson 503.5
  4. UMass 468.5
  5. St. Bonaventure 457
  6. La Salle 339
  7. St. Louis 208.5

Women’s

  1. Richmond 687.5
  2. Duquesne 539
  3. Davidson 515
  4. George Washington 438
  5. UMass 352
  6. George Mason 317
  7. La Salle 254.5
  8. St. Bonaventure 215
  9. St. Louis 206
  10. Rhode Island 113

George Washington won 14 events and captured 21 medals. The Colonials garnered men’s swimming coach of the year honors for Brian Thomas, and Karol Mlynarczyk was named Atlantic 10 Championships Most Outstanding Swimmer and Most Outstanding Rookie honors.

The Colonials suffered a disqualification in the 200 medley relay on the opening day Wednesday. It wouldn’t be until the mile on Saturday that GW was again kept from one of the top two steps of the podium.

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Atlantic 10 women’s champion Richmond; Photo Courtesy: Atlantic 10 Championships

Mlynarczyk’s big day was Friday, the freshman winning the 100 butterfly and 100 backstroke in quick succession. He returned on Saturday to claim the 200 back crown.

It was a parade of GW winners. Marek Osina and Emils Pone went 1-2 in the 200 individual medley, then reversed order for the 400 IM. Pone took down a pair of Atlantic 10 Championships record, downing his 2019 mark in the 400 IM in 3:46.32, then outdueling La Salle’s Zack Wolbert by .04 to win the 200 fly. Pone’s time of 1:45.19 dashed the marked set by Luke Devore in 2020. Osina also won the 200 breaststroke.

Tyler Kawakami won the 50 free and 100 free and finished second in the 100 breast. Oscar Madsen won the 500 free.

George Mason was the clear second choice to the GW juggernaut. Dylan Peck won the 100 breast, finished second to Osina in the 200 breast and took third in the 200 IM. Anthony Nguyen won the 200 free.

Tyler Pidde and Wilson Dubois of UMass went 1-2 in the 1,650 and 2-3 in the 500. La Salle’s Wolbert was also third in the 400 IM. St. Bonaventure’s Maciej Danilewski (second in 100 back and 200 back) and Tjaard Krusche (second in the 100 fly, third in 200 back) added points. The Bonnies’ Michael Bruno won the 3-meter and was fourth in the one-meter to claim the Atlantic 10 Championships’ Most Outstanding Men’s Diver award.

After finishing second in the first three relays of the meet, Richmond punctuated its win by claiming the culminating women’s 400 free relay in style. The squad of Lauren Medlin, Margaret Purcell, Katelyn Pennell and Claire O’Shaughnessy routing the field by 3.5 seconds to win in 3:21.03.

Purcell was one of three women to win multiple events. She helped author the race of the meet on Thursday. After taking the stop seed in prelims of the 200 IM at 2:00.87, she and Duquesne’s Emma Brinton went back and forth in the final. The result was a tie: Brinton and Purcell both clocking in at 2:00.17.

Brinton would prevail in the 400 IM, a 1-2 with teammate Emma Menzer with Purcell third. Purcell would go on to win the 200 breaststroke on Friday in 2:13.70, outdueling 100 breast champ Rachel Kimmel of St. Bonaventure.

Medlin won the 100 free and took third in the 50. Pennell was second in 200 back and third in the 100 back. O’Shaughnessy placed third in both butterfly events, identical podiums with Davidson’s Shelby Stanley in first and Duquesne’s Audrey Steen second. (Steen was also won the 100 back).

Davidson showed the top-end speed, but it fell shy of Duquesne in the race for second place. Stanley was named the Atlantic 10 Championships’ Most Outstanding Women’s Swimmer. Siena Senn backed Stanley by winning the 500 free and finishing third in the mile and 200 free for Davidson. Abby Francis won the 50 and was second in the 100.

In addition to Steen’s three top-two finishes, the Dukes saw Hanna Everhart win the 200 free and finish third in the 100.

There was plenty of balance in where the women’s victories went. George Washington’s Erin McCarthy won the mile and was third in the 500. Richmond’s Alexa Connors finished second in both distance events. George Mason breaststroker Jacquee Claybeaux was second in the 100 and third in the 200. La Salle’s Sara Rizzetto capped her championships by winning the 200 back after finishing second in the 200 free and third in 200 IM in a daunting program.

George Mason dominated the boards with Marina Toone claiming the 3-meter with teammate Hailey Fisher second, then the duo switching places for the 1-meter.

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