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SMC Swimming: Individuals shine in loss

Rick Hidy | Monday, January 21, 2013

St. Mary’s faced off against two rivals from their own conference Friday at the Rolfs Aquatics Center. Though the Belles were defeated by both Calvin and Kalamazoo at the meet, the individual results were encouraging for the team.

“The girls did great individually coming off of the break,” Belles coach Mark Benishek said. “We went through hard training for a week and really bounced back on Friday.”

The meet was a double dual event, with the Belles losing to Calvin 186-54 and Kalamazoo 169-61. Calvin and Kalamazoo also competed in the meet. Freshman Emily Brown set a personal best in the 500-yard freestyle with a time of 5:39.87. Sophomore Anna Nolan and freshmen Carolyn Neville, Megan Knobloch and senior Ellie Watson finished the 200-yard freestyle relay in 1:43.30, a top-five time in St. Mary’s program history.

Sophomore Anna Nolan posted one of the most impressive performances of the night by finishing third overall in both the 50-yard freestyle and the 100-yard backstroke. Senior Ellie Watson showcased her ability at longer distances, finishing third in both the 200 and 500-yard freestyle events.

Despite the pair of losses, the Belles have plenty to take away from the meet heading into next Saturday’s regular season finale against Olivet at Notre Dame.

“We are right on pace, especially out of the long layover,” Benishek said. “We are setting ourselves up for conference play well. We need to continue our training to make that big push and fine tune to cut down on hundredths of seconds.”

Contact Rich Hidy at [email protected]