ATHENS, OH – Sophomore Caroline Simmons turned in a record breaking performance in the 50-yard freestyle to highlight the University at Buffalo's efforts on Thursday at the Mid-American Conference Women's Swimming and Diving Championships at the Ohio University Aquatic Center.
Simmons finished second in the championship race, falling by one-hundredth of a second to Ohio sophomore Lauren Funk. Simmons broke her own UB record in the effort finishing in 22.79 and earning an NCAA Championships B cut in the event. In Thursday's preliminary heats, Simmons lowered her 2010 record to 22.85, establishing an Ohio pool record and qualifying first overall. Funk broke Simmons' pool record with her 22.78 finish in the championship.
Senior Jessie Koltz also qualified for Thursday's 50-yard freestyle consolation. Koltz tied for second in consolation race (10th overall) in a season-best 23.51.as she and Bowling Green's Emily Bennett touched the wall simultaneously to split the 13 available points between the Bulls and Falcons. Koltz had posted a season-best time of 23.52 in Thursday's heats.
The Bulls broke a school record in the lone relay race of the evening, the 200-yard freestyle relay. UB's foursome of Marissa Murphy, Karly Moore, Koltz and Simmons finished in 1:32.47, earning a B cut and lowering the school record, previously set at last year's MAC meet by .45 seconds. The Bulls have now set two school records in the three relay races held thus far at the meet.
Three Bulls competed in the consolation final of the 200-yard individual medley after qualifying ninth, 10th and 11th in the morning session. In the final, Alie Schirmers finished second (10th overall) in a season-best 2:04.04. Murphy finished third in the race (11th overall) in 2:04.47 after posting a season-best mark of 2:04.40 in Thursday's heats. Brynn Marecki took sixth in the consolation (14th overall) in 2:05.12 after setting her season-best with a 2:04.67 clocking in the heats.
Senior Jordan Deren finished fifth in the 500-yard freestyle consolation final. Deren turned in a final time of 4:55.64 after posting a season-best mark of 4:55.16 in the preliminary heats on Thursday morning. Deren took more than 10 seconds off her mark set at December's Zippy Invitational.
Freshman Ava Giachino finished 11th in the one-meter diving competition. Giachino scored 242.80 points in Thursday night's six-dive program following her 244.15 point effort in the preliminary round.
Through seven events, the Bulls stand sixth among the eight MAC squads with 138.5 points. Ohio leads the meet with 271 points.
Competition continues through Saturday.
Team scores: Ohio 271, Toledo 195, Miami (OH) 175, Eastern Michigan 164, Akron 146, Buffalo 138.5, Bowling Green 131.5, Ball State 85.