Women Take Fifth, Men Sixth at Appalachian Swimming Championships
CHRISTIANSBURG, Va. - The Asbury women's swim team, garnering 335.3 points, finished the 2014 ASC Conference Championships with a fourth place finish on Saturday, while the men finished in sixth with 384.9 points.
The women started their meet strong in Event no. 1 as the 200 Free Relay team-- automatic NAIA Championship qualifies-- hit the wall with an "A" cut time of 1:42.10 and in third place. As would be the case all weekend, the Eagles were chasing the eventual tournament winners, Brenau, who finished just ahead of the Eagles in second.
Claire Houlton, who was part of the 200 free relay team, kept things going for the Eagles with another top five finish in the 500 Free. Houlton touched in with a time of 5:22.45, good for a fourth place finish.
Kayley Valentine would pitch in on the scoresheet for the Eagles with a fourth place finish in the 400 IM event. Her 4:50.94 was another "A" cut for the Eagles.
In day two, Leah Fanning would get the Eagles a top five finish with her time of 2:17.94 in the 200 Butterfly. Brenau would again take the top spot in that event, touching in at 2:12.83.
The men started out the meet with a top-5 finish in the 200 Free Relay as well. The combination of Jacob Courey, Jimmy Hall, Joe Zeltwanger and Richard Barnes hit the wall with a time of 1:27.71, securing an automatic bid to the NAIA National Championships.
After the 200 Free Relay, the Eagles took sixth place in the next five events on the men's side.
Their next top-5 finish came in the form of a relay team again. Jake Bjork, Hall, Courey, and Friend Bechtel touched in at 7:14.14 for the 800 Free Relay. Wheeling Jesuit, winners of the event and the tournament title, took the event by three seconds over second place finishers St. Andrews.
The Eagles will take the next two weeks and change to start preparing for their trip to Oklahoma City, Okla., for the 2014 NAIA National Championships. The Eagles will send a total of 17 swimmers-- nine men, eight women--to the National meet slated to begin on March 5th.
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