Women's swim and dive ends season on record-breaking notes

By Allison Hamila
Arizona Daily Wildcat
Monday, March 21, 2005

While the rest of their peers were enjoying their spring break, the No. 6 Arizona women's swimming and diving team was busy capturing a big performance at the NCAA Championships in West Lafayette, Ind., March 17-19.

The women took third place with 440 points, just behind Auburn and national champion Georgia.

The Wildcats broke six school records, and nine women earned All-America honors.

Arizona also swam away with two individual titles.

Junior Marshi Smith set an Arizona record in the 100-yard backstroke with a time of 52.82. She broke the previous record of 52.91.

Senior Emily Mason also captured the 400-meter freestyle title, with a school-record-breaking time of 4:37.11, the old record being 4:38.48. Other record-breaking times came from sophomore Whitney Myers in the 200y individual (1:56.43); the 200y free relay team of juniors Jenna Gresdal, Smith, and freshmen Courtney Cashion and Lacey Nymeyer (1:28.50); the 800y free relay team of Mason, Myers, senior Jessica Hayes, and Nymeyer (7:02.65); and the 400y freestyle relay team of Gresdal, Cashion, Hayes and Nymeyer (3:14.30). The diving season for the women ended as well for seniors Daniela Bemme and Claire Febvay.

Febvay qualified for the meet finals in the 10m platform and finished eighth with 416.85 points. Bemme took 11th with 393.60 points. The last evening of competition started with Hayes, who took third in the championship finals in the 200y backstroke with a personal-best time of 1:54.56. Smith finished eighth with a personal-best time of 1:57.02.

The 100y freestyle yielded three women qualifiers for the finals.

Nymeyer took second with a personal- and team-best time of 48.56. Gresdal finished fifth, and Cashion took eighth.

Mason took second in the 200y breaststroke in 1:54.79, and Myers clocked in a time of 1:55.60 to finish fourth.