Missouri Swimmers Dominating After Day One of Mizzou Invite

Thursday, Dec. 1-

Although the beginning of December brought about some chilly Missouri air, things were nothing but hot in the Mizzou Aquatic Center as the men and women’s swim teams dominated in their first day of the Mizzou Invite.

Mizzou hosted Drury University, the University of Kansas, the University of North Dakota, the University of North Texas, Saint Louis University, Missouri S&T and the University of California-Davis.

The Tigers started the meet on the prowl, capturing the 200-yard freestyle relay win in the finals. The team of Shara Stafford, Cassie Cunningham, Lisa Nathanson and Emily Doucette not only took first place, they broke the Missouri All-Time record in that event and qualified for the NCAA B standard.

Missouri’s success continued with a second place finish by Stephanie Rovig in the 500-yard freestyle final. In addition, Mizzou captured the top 100-yard butterfly finishing times as Stafford touched the wall first in the women’s race and Neil O’Halloran dominated the men’s event. O’Halloran’s time, 47.58, met the NCAA qualifying B standard.

The Tigers found success in the 200-yard IM as well. Emy DiBenigno took the first place spot in 2:00.41, and Dominique Bouchard placed second with a time of 2:00.59. Rachel Ripley took third. All three swimmers also met the NCAA qualifying B standard.

In the 400-yard medley relay, the men’s team of Abernathy, Conroy, Darragh and Krause placed first with a time of 3.17.50. Mizzou also claimed third place in the event. The women’s team also raced to a strong finish with a first place win in the 400-yard medley relay. The team of Brigette Selbert, Courtney Rhodenbaugh, Lexi Spivak and Doucette recorded a time of 3:47.83 to nab the top spot.

The Tigers did not stop after the domination in the racing pool, continuing their quest in diving. Two Tiger athletes met NCAA qualifying standards and claimed the top rankings in the 1-meter diving event. David Bonuchi placed first with a score of 373.95, while Mitch Harris placed second with 304.75 points.

The women’s team swept the top three places in the 3-meter diving event. Jordan Morcom placed first with a score of 332.40 points, while Sharon Finn placed second and Christina Gailey placed third.

The scoring success of the Tigers on day one of the invitational shows the large improvement the team has made this year. Many of the swimmers have seen significant drops in their times (even in day one of the meet), and the team is overall becoming a very cohesive unit.

Missouri continues their quest for gold in day two of the tournament on Friday, Dec. 2.

-Hanna Battah
23 Sports

Staff Writer