Swimming: CAA champions: Tribe makes history

The 2015 CAA Championship men’s team racked up 784.5 points for the College, securing the first conference title in Tribe history last week. COURTESY PHOTO / TRIBE ATHLETICS

William and Mary placed in the top three of the Colonial Athletic Association Championships on both the men’s and the women’s sides. The four-day event took place in Richmond, Va. last week.

The men’s squad won the conference championship for the first time in school history. The Tribe compiled 784.5 points, the second-highest score in CAA history, winning by over 100 points. Defending champion University of North Carolina-Wilmington placed third with 565.5 points, while Towson placed second with 599 points.

Junior Jeremiah O’Donnell won all three of his individual events. He qualified for the National Collegiate Athletic Association meet in the 2000-meter breaststroke. He also competed on the 800-meter free relay team which took the top spot. 

O’Donnell broke conference records on the 800-meter freestyle relay, 200-meter individual medley and 400-meter IM; he was named Most Outstanding Swimmer of the Championships for his accomplishments.

Junior Will Manion won the 200-meter backstroke and set a new conference record with a time of 1:44.13. He placed second in both the 100-meter backstroke and 200-meter IM and was a contributing member of the 200-meter medley relay team, 800-meter freestyle relay, 400-meter freestyle relay team and 400-meter medley relay team, all four of which took first place. Manion now holds a career total of 11 conference titles, the most in school history.

Junior Billy Russell finished third in the 50-meter freestyle, contributed to the gold-medal-winning 200-meter medley and 400-meter freestyle relay team, and took second in the 200-meter freestyle, for which he also qualified for the NCAA Championships. He also took second in the 100-meter freestyle.

Freshman Evan Baker took second in the 200-meter butterfly with a time of 1:46.80, the third-fastest time in College history and enough to qualify for NCAAs. Freshman Tommy Kealy took 11th in the 1650-meter freestyle with the fourth-fastest time in school history.

The women’s team placed third in the CAA Championship for the third year in a row, scoring 585 points to finish behind defending three-time CAA champion Towson and James Madison.

Sophomore Allie Christy finished second in the 200-meter IM, qualifying for the NCAA and breaking her own school record with a time of 2:00.98.

Sophomore Jaime Miller and senior Meghan Howard placed second and third, respectively, in the 50-meter freestyle. Both qualified for the NCAA meet. Miller also finished second in the 100-meter freestyle and added another NCAA-qualifying time. The Tribe won both the 200-meter freestyle relay and the 200-meter medley relay. Howard swam on both teams.

In the preliminaries of the 100-meter butterfly, junior Jessie Ustjanauska and freshman Abby Mack both qualified for the NCAA, taking second and third, respectively. Ustjanauska’s time of 54.11 was the second fastest in school history, while Mack’s time of 54.45 sets a new freshman record for the College. In the finals of the same event, Ustjanauska took second with a time of 54:24. Howard finished fourth, qualifying for the NCAA. Mack finished fifth.

SophomoreSophie Rittenhouse won the 100-meter backstroke in 54.38, setting a personal record as well as a school record; she also qualified for the NCAA. This was the first individual gold of her career.



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