AKRON, OH – The University at Buffalo finished in fourth-place, its highest showing in league history, as the three-day Mid-American Conference Women's Swimming and Diving Championships came to a close at Akron's Ocasek Natatorium. The Bulls scored 448 points, their highest total since joining the league in 1998.
Brittney Kuras became the first UB women's swimmer to win three individual events at the championship meet since 2005 as she earned the MAC's Most Outstanding Swimmer award. On Saturday, Kuras claimed the 100-yard freestyle in a school and MAC meet record time of 48.90. The time broke Caroline Simmons' UB mark of 49.67 which she set to win last season's MAC title. It was also the third consecutive victory in the event for the Bulls after Simmons won in 2010 and 2011. Kuras won the 200-yard individual medley on Thursday and the 200-yard freestyle on Friday. She was also part of UB's victorious 200-yard freestyle relay team on Thursday. Jennefer Brankovsky won three events at the 2005 meet when she was named the Most Outstanding Swimmer. Mallory Morrell placed fifth in Saturday's championship race in 50.07 while Taylor Steffl (50.76) and Marissa Murphy (51.18) raced in the consolation final placing 11th and 13th overall.
Kuras also anchored UB's victorious 400-yard freestyle relay, the meet's final event, as the Bulls posted a school, MAC and MAC Championship record of 3:19.88. The foursome consisted of Morrell, Steffl, Murphy and Kuras.
Alie Schirmers finished fifth in Saturday's 200-yard breaststroke final as she set a season-best performance in 2:17.25. Brynn Marecki and Kelsey Barbour earned consolation points in the race. Marecki finished 10th overall in 2:17.23 while Barbour was 12th overall in 2:18.17 as both swimmers posted season-best times.
The Bulls also had consolation finishers in the 200-yard backstroke, 200-yard butterfly and the 1,650-yard freestyle. Claudia Doyle took 10th in the 200-yard backstroke in 2:01.29 while Melissa Trail was 11th in 2:01.74. Rachael Ragen took 15th in the 200-yard butterfly in 2:06.25. Emma Miller was 16th in the 1,650-yard freestyle in a season-best 17:16.06.
"I am so proud of the women. Words can't describe the feeling right now," said UB head coach Andy Bashor. "We performed so well this weekend and to finish the meet by winning the 400 free relay in school, pool and conference records is simply awesome."
Kuras was also named First Team All-MAC. She was joined by Morrell. Schirmers and Steffl picked up second-team All-MAC honors.
Final team scores: Toledo 635, Ohio 612, Miami (OH) 524, Buffalo 448, Eastern Michigan 392, Ball State 317, Akron 287, Bowling Green 268,