Nov. 17, 2012
LONG BEACH, Calif. -
The LMU swimming team turned in another stellar day on Friday at the 2012 Arena Invitational, qualifying eight swimmers for the evenings' finals - the most in program history at this level of an event. The highlight of the night proved to be LMU's 200 medley relay team of Sophie Allen, Rachel Dekar, Kjirsten Magnuson, and Camille Hopp breaking the LMU program record set back in 2007- the oldest on the books. Their time of 1:44.23 was .01 under the existing record and good for 9th place.
Two lifetime-best performances were posted in the first two individual races of the evening finals by junior Angelina Prat in the 400 individual medley with a 4:31.38, third-fastest time in program history, and by freshman Kristen Brennand in the 100 butterfly. Brennand dropped over a second off her personal-best time to turn in the second-fastest time in program history with a 56.85. In the morning's preliminaries, Prat posted another personal-best in the 100 butterfly with a 58.26, moving her into the 10th spot on LMU's All-Time list.
The Lions placed an unprecedented four swimmers in the 100 breaststroke finals led by redshirt junior Dekar's fifth-place finish in the Championship final. Dekar posted a season-best time of 1:03.47 followed closely by senior Hopp in 10th place with a 1:03.56. Hopp's time was a personal-best and second-fastest in program history behind Dekar's 1:02.81 set in 2011. Both swimmers qualified for the US Swimming National Championships and will again compete in this event in two weeks in Austin, Texas. Senior Stephanie Hess made it back to her first evening final with a lifetime-best performance of 1:06.21, for 26th place followed by freshman Hallie Hengels in 27th place with a season-best of 1:07.06. Hess now stands as the fifth-fastest Lion of all time while Hengels moved into the Top-10 list in the ninth position.
The other two individual finalists in Friday's events were Magnuson and Allen, who returned to the water for the 100 backstroke for a 26th and 27th-place finish, respectively, following their butterfly and backstroke legs on the record-breaking 200 medley relay. In the morning preliminaries of the same event, Magnuson dropped her personal-best time by almost a second, breaking the 57-second barrier with a time of 56.96.
In the last event of the evening, the 800 freestyle relay, the quartet of freshmen Kristen Clarno, Brennand, sophomore Diana Safa, and junior Katie Rick, claimed 11th place following a stellar lead-off leg by Clarno in 1:51.05, the second-fastest 200 freestyle in program history.
Other standouts from Friday morning's preliminaries were junior Lauren Saylor who sliced over three seconds off her personal-best in the 200 freestyle with a 1:57.62 and freshman Sofia Abrate who dropped under the minute barrier for the first time in the 100 backstroke with a time of 59.63, eighth-fastest in LMU history. It was both Saylor's and Abrate's second personal-best of the competition after Saylor dropped off .5 in the 50 freestyle contested on Thursday and Abrate dropped four seconds in the 200 Individual Medley. Freshman Mary Kate Reid also nabbed a personal-best in the 100 breaststroke with a 1:08.05, entering LMU's Top-10 list as the 10th-fastest All-Time performer in the event.
One day remains in the Arena Invitational with the 1650 freestyle, 200 backstroke, 100 freestyle, 200 breaststroke, 200 backstroke and 400 freestyle relay being contested on Saturday. Prelims for the women begin at 10:30 am with finals starting at 5:00 p.m.
- GO LIONS -