When William and Mary closed out its fall season at the Hokie Fall Invitational Nov. 20-22, both the men’s and women’s teams had sunk toward the bottom of the pack gathered at the Christiansburg Aquatics Center.
The women’s team came in fifth behind Virginia Tech, Alabama, South Carolina and Villanova, totaling 348.5 points over Ohio and Liberty. With 353 points, the Tribe men trailed Virginia Tech, Alabama and South Carolina, but beat Villanova.
Senior Megan Howard won the 50-meter free in 22.74, earning a National Collegiate Athletic Association provisional mark for her effort. Junior Jaimie Miller finished just behind her, taking third overall with a time of 23.26. Joined by junior Noelle Klockner and freshman Abby Mack, Howard and Miller returned for the 200-meter free relay. The squad came in fourth with a time of 1:33.15.
Freshman Annie Valls shattered a 12-year-old Tribe record in the 100-meter breast on the anniversary it was set. Valls clocked in at 1:03.15 in the event prelims, blowing the 1:03.43 record, set by Ruth Anne Miller ’03, out of the water. Later in the meet, Valls took sixth overall in the event with a time of 1:03.23, the second fastest time in school history.
The 400-meter medley relay saw sophomore Sophie Rittenhouse, freshman Annie Valls, Howard and Miller clock in at 3:45.75 and finish in eighth place. Sophomores Selina Fuller and Jess Russell joined Klockner and Miller for the Tribe’s 800-meter free relay, which finished tenth with a time of 7:34.81 in the 800 free relay. Howard, Klockner, Miller and junior Sara Schad also finished sixth with 3:25.78 in the 400-meter free relay.
Howard finished fourth in the 100-meter free in 50.64. Her season will continue in two weeks, when she competes at the USA Swimming Winter Nationals in Greensboro, N.C.
On the men’s side of the meet, the Tribe’s “A” 200-meter free relay took fifth. The squad, composed of senior Taegan Clarke and sophomores Alex Montes de Oca, Risten Clarke and Joe Eiden, clocked in at 1:22.92, the Tribe’s best performance at any non-Colonial Athletic Association Championships meet. The “B” team took tenth, with freshman Kyle Neri, freshman Evan Baker, junior Austin Glass and senior Matt Goetz swimming 126:20.
The 400-meter medley took eighth place overall, with junior Will Manion, junior Jeremiah O’Donnell, Baker and Clarke swimming a time of 3:20.49. O’Donnell went on to snag tenth place in the 200-meter individual medley in 1:50.90.
The Tribe’s 200-meter medley relay squad — Manion, Goetz, Baker and Montes de Oca — came in seventh with a time of 1:31.33. Sophomore Josh Zimmt took tenth place in the 100-meter breast with a time of 58.18. O’Donnell, Clarke, Dempsey and Manion finished seventh in 6:49.27 in the 800 free relay.
Baker placed sixth overall in the 100-meter fly with a time of 49.59. He also finished fifth in the 200-meter fly at 1:50.17, the tenth fastest race in this event in school history.