Oceania Championships: Australia Sweeps Gold Medals on Final Night

NOUMEA, New Caledonia, June 1. THE final night of pool competition at the Oceania Championships featured an Australian sweep of all ten gold medals up for grabs.

In the first individual event final of the evening, Jordan White of Australia cracked the 9-minute barrier en route to winning the women's 800 free. Australia went 1-2-3 in the event, with Leah Cutting in second (9:00.23) and Emily Seymour in third (9:15.60).

Australia's Kenneth To collected his sixth medal of the championships with a gold medal effort of 2:01.35 in the men's 200 IM. To won by almost four seconds as teammate Daniel Lester touched second in 2:05.25. New Zealand's Carsten Corazza placed third in 2:06.27. On the women's side, Australia's Amy Levings swept the IM events with a 2:18.91 in the 200. Mikkayla Sheridan, also of Australia, finished in silver medal position with a 2:18.97. Aja Grande of Hawaii earned bronze in 2:26.54.

Australia's Kyle Richardson captured the men's splash-and-dash 50 free with a sub-23 effort of 22.83, the only man in the field to dip under 23. Cameron Simpson of New Zealand recorded a 23.18 for second, while Papua New Guinea's Ryan Pini earned another medal with a 23.56 for bronze. Ami Matsuo of Australia picked up her third individual gold of the meet after winning the women's 50 free in 26.00, ahead of teammate Nicole Mee (26.82) and France's Armelle Hidrio (27.02).

The men's 200 breast featured a tight battle between the top four swimmers. At the finish, it was Australia's Nicholas Schafer who got his hands on the wall first in 2:16.67. France's Thomas Dahlia finished a hair behind in 2:16.70, followed by Australia's Nikolas Pregelj in 2:18.19. In the women's race, Aussies Jessica Hansen (2:32.57) and Lorna Tonks (2:36.86) finished first and second while Hawaii's Lena Hayakawa (2:46.92) was third.

The men's and women's 4×100 medley relays closed out the meet. Australia's quartet of Ben Edmonds, Nicholas Schafer, Daniel Lester and Kyle Richardson captured the men's race in 3:44.88, while Mikkayla Sheridan, Lorna Tonks, Nicole Mee and Ami Matsuo of Australia touched first in the women's finale in 4:15.09.

A mixed 4×100 medley relay was also contested at the start of the finals session, and Australia's Declan Potts, Amy Levings, Grace Loh and Ben Edmonds took home the title in 3:45.68.

Tomorrow's 10K open water race at Anse-Vata beach marks the final event of the championships.