NCAA Division II Swimming and Diving Championships: Amanda Thomas, Melissa Gates Set NCAA DII Records; UC San Diego Men, Wayne State Women Lead

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MANSFIELD, Texas, March 14. THE first night of short course yard action at the NCAA Division II Swimming and Diving Championships held in Mansfield, Texas produced a pair of NCAA DII records, while a pair of teams jumped out to strong day-one leads.

Wayne State's women led the team race with 134 points after day one, while Drury held second with 105 points. Grand Canyon (61), UC San Diego (61) and West Chester (59) rounded out the top five. Wayne State is looking to end a three-yard winning streak by the Drury women, all of which came with Wayne State looking up from the runner-up spot. UCSD's women were in a strong position after touching first in the women's 200 medley relay, but their team drew a disqualification, hurting UCSD's chances as the team title.

UC San Diego held the lead among the men with 100 points, while Drury owned second with 84 points. Grand Canyon (69), Grand Valley (67) and Incarnate Word (64) finished third through fifth after the first evening of racing. The Drury men are in the midst of a seven-year streak at the top of the NCAA Division II ranks, but will have their hands full with the likes of the other top five teams making a run for the top.

Southern Connecticut's Amanda Thomas clipped the NCAA DII record in the women's 200 IM with a 2:00.09. That swim eclipsed the 2:00.56 set by Truman's Kate Aherne in 2010. UCSD's Alexandra Henley took second in 2:01.41, while Ouachita's Ksenia Gromova picked up third in 2:02.75.

California Pennsylvania's Melissa Gates edged the NCAA DII standard in the women's 50 free with a winning 22.59. That effort erased the 22.64 set by Drury's Eunate Garro in 2009. Drury's Yu Wai Ting touched second in 23.00, while Ashland's Julie Widmann placed third in 23.10.

GVSU's Aaron Beebe topped the men's 200 IM in 1:46.31, just off the NCAA DII record of 1:46.03 set by Tampa's Aleksander Hetland back in 2009. Wayne State's Piotr Jachowicz placed second in 1:47.03, while Florida Southern's Jeffrey Halfacre took third in 1:47.36.

Wayne State's Andrey Seryy, who owns the NCAA DII record with a 19.39 last year, won the men's 50 free in 19.47 tonight. GCU's Michael Branning placed second in 20.00, while Drury's Vladimir Sidorkin earned third in 20.05.

Drury's Erin Dolan captured the women's 1000 free in 9:53.33, while Tampa's Heather Glenday finished second in 10:00.72. West Chester's Kassandra McNichol completed the top three in 10:03.61. Wingate's Iaroslav Denysenko topped the men's 1000 free in 8:59.13. Incarnate Word's Mark Rubin touched second in 9:06.63, while UCSD's Matthew Herman claimed third in 9:07.02.

In diving, Wayne State's Carly Sevald won the three-meter event among the women with 503.40 points. Clarion's Kristen Day finished second with 484.75 points, while Wayne State's Paige Kortman took third with 477.70 points.

Wayne State's Alexandria Malfroid, Kayla Scott, Perezoria Martinez and Ashley Corriveau won the women's 200 medley relay in 1:42.94. Drury (1:43.20) and Ashland (1:43.47) rounded out the top three. Bridgeport's Oscar Pereiro, Ruben Gimenez, Ilkka Hanhineva and Krzysztof Wilk captured the men's 200 medley relay in 1:28.38. GVSU (1:28.49) and Incarnate Word (1:28.50) picked up second and third place honors.

Editorial coverage of all NCAA Swimming and Diving Championships is brought to you by our sponsor Colorado Time Systems.

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