Bulldogs Set NEC Record in 200 Free RelayFebruary 23, 2012
CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – A pair of gold medals in the 200 free relay and the 50 free has the Bryant University women's swimming and diving team in fourth place after two days at the Northeast Conference Championships.
Thanks to their two gold medals, the Bulldogs find themselves in fourth place with 201 points. Central Connecticut leads with 268 points and Saint Francis is in second with 224 points. Wagner has accumulated 220 points over the first two days to place third.
Looking to defend their title in the 200 free relay, the Bulldogs did that and more, setting a new NEC record with a time of 1:34.72. Amy D'Olympia (Mattapoisett, Mass.), Mara Valenzuela (Bridgewater, N.J.), Taylor DeBever (Denver, Colo.) and Casey Ostrander (Yarmouthport, Mass.) combined to take home the title as they touched the wall less than a second ahead of Mount St. Mary's.
Bryant's other gold came from none other than Ostrander. The two-time Swimmer of the Meet, Ostrander was in search of her third-straight gold medal in the 50 free but had a big competitor in Alicia Ford from Saint Francis (PA). Ostrander shrugged off the pressure to set a new school record in the preliminaries with a time of 23.18 and then beat out Ford by less than three tenths of a second to win the gold.
The Black and Gold also earned another medal on the evening as DeBever finished third in the 500 free, taking home a bronze medal. She finished sixth in the preliminaries but then cut over nine seconds off her time, finishing third with a school-record time of 4:57.37.
The Bulldogs also received strong performances from Molly Smith (Belmont, Mass.), Brianne Dwyer (Hicksville, N.Y.) and Abby Whittaker (Salisbury, Mass.) in the 200 IM. Smith finished seventh (2:09.52), Dwyer was 12th (2:11.47) and Whittaker was 14th (2:12.78). Bryant also earned points in the 50 free thanks to an eighth-place finish from D'Olympia and a ninth-place finish from Valenzuela.
Day two brought another first for the Bulldogs as they had two divers compete in the conference championships for the first time in program history. Kailey Frye (Lakeville, Mass.) finished seventh with 148.25 points in the 1-meter dive. Competing in just her second meet this season, Courtney Pomer (Walpole, Mass.) finished ninth with a 116.10 points.
Day three of the meet begins at 11:00 a.m. on Friday and continues with finals beginning at 7:00 p.m. Full coverage of the championships can be found at the 2012 NEC Swimming and Diving Championship page.