White, Williamson Go 1-2 in 200 Individual Medley
CHRISTIANSBURG, Va. – Freshmen Sarah White and Ellen Williamson led six Cavaliers in the 200 individual medley final with a 1-2 finish as day two of the 2012 Women’s ACC Championships continued Thursday at the Christiansburg Aquatic Center in Christiansburg, Va.
Additionally, junior Lauren Perdue and sophomore Rachel Naurath earned spots on the podium with second-place performances in the 50 freestyle and 500 freestyle, respectively. Freshman Alison Haulsee joined that duo as an all-conference honoree with a third-place finish in the 500 freestyle.
Through seven events, Virginia has accumulated 311 points to lead second-place North Carolina (197) and third-place Florida State (166).
UVa’s 200 freestyle relay got things started when Perdue, Meredith Cavalier, Kelly Flynn and Emily Lloyd edged Maryland for the relay victory in 1:29.95, a NCAA ‘B’ time. The Terps touched in 1:30.02 for second place; it was the fourth consecutive year that Virginia had won the relay.
“It was great to get a come-from-behind win in the relay,” Virginia head coach Mark Bernardino said. “It was a wonderful way to start the night. To have Emily be the person to pull that out for us was inspirational and a nice lift for the team.”
White collected her first career conference title in the 200 individual medley, finishing in a winning time of 1:57.68, the third-fastest in school history. Williamson touched in 1:57.79 for fourth-best in program history. Both were NCAA ‘B’ cuts.
“Obviously it was the big event of the evening for us,” Bernardino said. “It’s one thing to go out there and win the preliminaries; it’s another to come back and win at night in the finals. Those two girls went wire-to-wire and had two really magnificent times.”
“The 200 IM is a relatively new race for me,” White said. “I never considered it one of my best events until today. I still learn each and every time I swim. I wouldn’t have changed anything about today and having five of my teammates in that race with me. We really swam together for each other and for our team.”
Redshirt freshman Megan Fox was fourth in the 200 individual medley (1:58.70, ‘B’), followed by senior Erika Stewart in fifth (1:59.02, ‘B’), senior Kelly Flynn in seventh (2:00.03, ‘B’) and freshman Shaun Casey in eighth (2:01.18). Sophomore Charlotte Clarke took 14th (2:02.02) out of the consolation final.
“Megan is one of the toughest racers I have ever seen,” Bernardino noted. “She races with absolutely no fear and her performance tonight was huge. Erika made a great run to try and win the race in the third 50, it was a lifetime best for Kelly and another great swim by Shaun.”
Perdue bested her prelim time in the 50 freestyle to take second overall after touching in 22.17. Sophomore Emily Lloyd finished sixth overall (23.12) while junior Meredith Cavalier was 10th (22.91, ‘B’) out of the consolation heat.
“It took one of the fastest times in the nation to beat Lauren tonight,” Bernardino said. “It was a great swim from her.”
Naurath took second in the 500 freestyle with a NCAA ‘B’ time of 4:41.03 and was joined by Haulsee on the podium after she clocked a mark of 4:42.37, another ‘B’ standard, to place third. Freshman Kelly Offutt was sixth (4:45.91, ‘B’) and sophomore Caroline Kenney was seventh (4:50.29). Sophomore Hillary Petersen took 12th (4:49.50) out of the consolation final.
“We did a great job in the 500 free,” Bernardino said. “We lost to a superb athlete in (UNC’s) Stephanie Peacock, one of the best in the country. To be 2-3 in that race was pivotal. Kelly went her lifetime best and moved up a couple of spots. We did what we need to do in that race. Coming off the relay, we continued to swim with a lot of heart and a lot of enthusiasm.”
Day three of the ACC Championships continues at 11 a.m. Friday with preliminaries in the 400 individual medley, 100 butterfly, 200 freestyle, 100 breaststroke, men’s 1-meter diving and women’s 3-meter diving.
2012 ACC Women’s Swimming & Diving Championships
Feb. 15-18 | Christiansburg, Va.
After 7 Events
311 2. North Carolina
197 3. Florida State
166 T4. Miami
130 T4. Virginia Tech
130 6. Maryland
118 6. Georgia Tech
105.5 8. NC State
96.5 9. Duke
86 10. Clemson 73 11. Boston College