GAMBIER — For the second time in as many seasons and for third time overall, the Kenyon College women’s swimming and diving team earned the title for the annual Total Performance Invitational, a three-day meet held at Steen Aquatics Center.
Saturday, the final day of the Invitational, the Kenyon women racked up five event wins, sweeping the top three spots in three of those events. By the time the session was over, the Ladies had 2,721.5 points and their second-straight title.
The rest of the team standings had New York University in second place with 2,180 points, Carnegie Mellon University in third place with 1,720.5 points, Ashland University in fourth place with 597 points and Susquehanna University in fifth place with 519 points.
The Ladies set the tone for the final evening by claiming the top four spots in the 200-yard backstroke. Sophomore Crile Hart led the way with a winning and meet-record time of 1:57.35. That cleared the old record of 1:58.10 set one season ago by Ohio State University’s Marianne Kahmann. Following Hart, in order, were senior Delaney Ambrosen (2:02.55), senior Caitlyn Foley (2:02.58) and sophomore Kaitlyn Griffith (2:02.96). All four of those Kenyon times were season-bests, as well as NCAA ‘B’ qualifiers.
Next up was the 100-yard freestyle. The Ladies took the top three spots and eight of the top-ten spots in the event. Senior Abby Wilson was first to the wall with a time of 50.43. Fellow senior Hannah Orbach-Mandel was second (51.04) and sophomore Celina German was third (51.61). Again, all three of those times were season-bests and NCAA ‘B’ qualifiers.
The Ladies didn’t let up in the 200-yard breaststroke, either. With freshman Andrea Perttula finishing first, the Kenyon women turned in the top four finishes in the event. Perttula cranked out an NCAA ‘B’ cut time of 2:15.27. Behind her was sophomore Claire Murray (2:23.65), sophomore Katie Rossman (2:24.60) and freshman Ana Dunn (2:25.00).
In diving competition, Kenyon senior Madeline Carlson completed the two-board sweep. After winning the three-meter competition Friday, Carlson won the one-meter event Saturday with a score of 449.80.
Finishing off the meet in style, the Ladies posted one final event win in the meet-ending 400-yard freestyle relay. The quartet of Wilson, German, Hart and Orbach-Mandel posted a winning time of 3:23.42, which was yet another season-best for the Ladies.
Kenyon’s strong weekend continued as the Lords won the overall team event with 3,124 points. Carnegie Mellon University followed in second place (1996.5) while New York University finished in third (1877.5).
Junior Connor Rumpit secured the team’s first victory during the 1,650 freestyle race. He topped his previous season-best attained at the Ohio State Invitational with a 15:34.43 mark Saturday. That mark was 13 seconds better and met ‘B’ cut standards.
Fellow classmate Mick Bartholomew followed an event later with another win. In the 200-yard backstroke, Bartholomew touched the wall with a qualifying time of 1:46.70. Freshman Grant Thompson added a third-place mark in the same race.
Tommy Weiss, another junior, continued his strong weekend during the night’s third event, the 100 freestyle. He won with a time of 44.73. Additionally, David Fitch, Cole McMahon-Gioeli, Joe Black and Robert Williams claimed second through fifth, respectively. All five swimmers attained ‘B’ cut times, as well.
Bartholomew added his second individual victory later as he completed the 200-yard breaststroke in a qualifying time of 2:00.25. Right after Bartholomew was Luis Weekes while Kieran Allsop snagged third place (2:01.75).
Kenyon then closed the Invitational with its fifth win of the evening during the 400-yard freestyle relay. Fitch, Black, McMahon-Gioeli and Weiss teamed up and registered a qualifying time of 2:58.71.
Rounding out the team’s best marks included Nicholas Tong’s runner-up finish in the 200-yard butterfly while Jon Zimdars followed in third. On the 3-meter diving board, Ryder Sammons finished in fourth with 486.45 points.
Kenyon will now break for a little over a month, and regroup in Venice, Fla. on Jan. 3, 2019, for its annual winter training trip.