Calvin Women Continue To Widen Lead at MIAA Swimming & Diving Championships - Men in Fight For 3rd
Saturday, February 13, 2010
(written by Derek Neice, Mitch Blankespoor and Jeff Febus)
Day two of the 2010 MIAA Swimming and Diving Championships has concluded, and the Calvin women are continuing to broaden the gap between their team and the competition after another fantastic day in the water.
Calvin still leads the table with 698 points and lead the nearest team in Hope College by 228. On the men’s side, Calvin sits in fourth place with 285 points, 28 points behind third place Olivet. Hope leads the competition with 599 points followed by Kalamazoo with 552.
Friday’s order of events will most likely be the longest of the three days of competition, and it consisted of first the 200 medley relay, and then the 400 IM, the 100 fly, the 200 free, the 100 breast, the 100 back, 1-meter diving for the women, and finally the 800 free relay.
“What jumped out to me most today was our ability to jump up the ladder from prelims to finals on our seedings,” Calvin coach Dan Gelderloos said after the events had concluded. “And on the women’s side we had a number of outstanding swims.”
On the day, the Calvin women put up 375 more points to complement the 323 points they scored Thursday, giving them the total of 698. Essentially these girls have the title all but locked up and in their events Saturday they shouldn’t show any signs of slowing down.
Calvin had another plethora of great wins Friday including Calvin’s A-team [Kristen Kinzer, Emily Roberts, Caitlin Alexander, and Monica Bressler] winning the 200 medley relay in a B-cut time of 1:46.25, Maggie Vail, Emily Roberts and Libby Counsell sweeping the top three spots in the 100 breast with B-cut times of 1:04.94, 1:04.97, and 1:06.53 respectively, and Monica Bressler and Kristen Kinzer swimming B-cut times in the 100 back and taking first and third with times of 58.66 and 59.31 respectively.
“Monica Bressler keeps on shining with her 100 backstroke,” Gelderloos said when asked about some key performances on the women’s side. “And the breaststrokers took one two three with the two seniors and the freshman and those three girls should be going as well to the big dance.”
Similar to Thursday, Friday’s races showed many great non-win finishes that allowed the Knights increase their lead by so much. In the 100 fly finals Caitlin Alexander took fourth in a time of 59.71 and in the 100 fly consolation finals Kristen Kinzer finished first with a time of 59.49, a time that would have been good enough for fourth place in the final heat. Senior Kelley Barr was close behind in 10th place (1:00.07), one day after finishing seventh in the 200 IM (2:14.81).
Other notable finishes included Laura Price and Kendra Kinzer going second and third in the 200 free finals with times of 1:56.51 and 1:56.62 respectively, Rachel Colasurdo finishing third in the 400 IM with a time of 4:42.76, and finally the Calvin A-team [Rachel Colasurdo, Laura Price, Libby Veldkamp, and Kendra Kinzer] taking second in the 800 free relay finals with an NCAA III B’ cut time of 7:48.74.
“Kristy Kinzer, and it goes a long way with me in having a rough start and coming out the next day and bouncing back, really having a big-time day and proving what she’s all about,” Gelderloos said of Kinzer’s performance Friday. “She had a B-cut in the backstroke, led off our medley relay and really just bounced back well which I love to see.”
With such a big lead going into the final day of racing, these Calvin women are exactly where they want to be, and after the final event Saturday, we should be looking at the Knights hoisting that conference championship trophy.
The finals are set to begin again at 6 p.m. Saturday.
In the men’s competition, Calvin stayed within striking distance of Olivet as the Knights and Comets continue to jockey for third place.
Calvin’s top individual performance of the evening came in the 100 butterfly as freshman Mark Rushlow took third with an NCAA III B’ cut time of 50.29. Rushlow was just two-hundreths of a second behind defending champion Ryan Nelis and a half-second behind winner Paul Ellis of Kalamazoo.
In the consolation heat, freshman Ryan Martinie also came up with an incredible effort, winning the heat with a ninth place time of 52.48. Heading into the final 25 yards, Martinie trailed four competitors but caught up with 10 yards to go and then touched out Olivet’s Rafe Maxwell at the wall by four-hundreths of a second.
“I think Mark has a chance to go to nationals with that time which is very exciting,” said Gelderloos. “Ryan Martinie also had a very exciting race. He was close to being last at the final wall but he came through in a big way. It was great strategy on his part.”
Senior Kurt Van Allsburg also had a classic finish in taking sixth place with a time of 52.96 in the 100 backstroke. Van Allsburg also trailed heading down the final stretch but touched out a competitor by one-hundreth of a second for sixth. Freshman Kyle Garringer also took 11th (54.51), freshman Sam Allison 13th (55.79), junior Tyler Westman 14th (55.88) and freshman Zach Reuther 16th (58.09) in the 100 back.
In the 100 breaststroke, sophomore Greg Gorham had a superb day, finishing sixth with a school record time of 59.05, breaking his own record of 59.28 set in the morning prelims. The previous record had been 59.88 set by Keith Conrad in 2009. Sophomore Chris Shepperly also took 11th (1:02.11), and sophomore Luke Griffioen 15th (1:05.82) in the 100 breaststroke.
In the 200 freestyle sophomore Ross Battoclette was 10th (1:45.17) and freshman Kenton Cooper 15th (1:48.33).
Calvin also received strong performances in the 400 IM with freshman Stephen Kraft taking seventh in 4:19.34, freshman Mathias Bares taking ninth (4:24.56) and Griffioen 15th (4:50.48).
In the 200 medley relay, Calvin’s quartet of Van Allsburg, Gorham, Martinie and Garringer took fourth with a season-best time of 1:36.92 while its 800 freestyle relay team of Rushlow, Battoclette, Cooper and Bares taking fourth in a season-best time of 7:06.37.
“I was very proud of both of our relays tonight,” said Gelderloos. “Our 800 freestyle relay had a sophomore and three freshmen – the youngest relay by far in the meet – and they came up with a very respectable time.”
CALVIN WOMEN’S DIVERS PILE UP THE POINTS
Building off of the momentum of perhaps a record day yesterday, the women’s swimming and diving team took to the pool looking to extend its lead. The divers took to the one-meter board, and had great success. Calvin had three of their four divers qualify for the finals with 2nd, 3rd, and 9th place finished in the prelims. Senior Casey Herman was not to be denied, scoring over 400 yet again with a score of 441.36. This score was not only good enough to win, as well as put her in consideration for nationals in Minneapolis.
“Today was great prelims that set us up for the finals tonight. No one moment defines our season. We just go out there one at a time and nail our dives. Casey went out and did just that by putting away her reverse one and a half.” Diving head coach Aaron Paskvan commented.
It truly was a team effort. Freshmen Samantha Klaasan finished third tallying 432.60. Along with Herman, this score puts Klaasan in consideration for a spot in the one meter diving nationals
“I couldn’t be prouder of Sam. She stepped up huge as a freshman again. She is kinda bursting on the scene now producing results in big time moments.”
Junior Carmen Brummel was fighting sickness, but still scored solid with a 369.20, good enough for a ninth place finish.
“ Tonight was a courageous performance tonight. She was having some stomach problems before she got in the pool. It was impressive to see her fight through that.”
All of these divers scored Calvin crucial points that widened Calvin’s lead and might lead to a record being set for Calvin. As for the potential national qualifiers, Paskvan had this to say.
“ It’s a two week selection process. It ultimately comes down to how they look on tape because the panel will re-rank and score them again right there.”
The men had the day off today, but will take up the three-meter board tomorrow. This might be the outcome of whether or not the men can sneak past Olivet in the standings.
“Those points tomorrow that Colin will be competing for will be huge. We are hoping he will get us at least within 13 points of Olivet and hopefully more.”