UNIVERSITY CENTER, Mi. The Northern Michigan University Swim and Dive teams concluded their second day of the 2020 Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Championships Thursday with the women's team holding their first place team score with 456.5 points while the men are third with 304.5 total points halfway through the Championship meet. After their second day of finals, both teams saw NCAA qualifying relay times and the men achieved a new team record.
The women's team finished the first event of the day with a second place time in the 200-yard freestyle relay. Competing for a time of 1:33.99 was freshman Michaela Nelson (Sun Prairie, Wis.), freshman Julianna Engesser (South Elgin, Ill.), junior Margaret Vaitkus (Munster, Ind.), and senior Rachel Helm (Newcastle upon Tyne, England). The women also took second in the 400-yard medley relay, finishing in 3:48.31 to make an NCAA cut. The team consisted of freshman Jenna Joerger (Eagan, Minn.), sophomore Briana Arnold (Black Creek, Wis.), freshman Meritxell Font Cantarero (Girona, Spain), and Vaitkus.
The men's team finished third in the 200-yard freestyle relay with a time of 1:21.10 with a team of junior Amir Saman Khajegi (Mashhad, Iran), freshman Roberto Camera (Rozzano, Italy), sophomore Henry Bauer (Howell, Mich.), senior Lajos Budai (Kecskemet, Hungary). In the 400-yard medley relay, the men's team of senior Maksim Kapustin (Minneapolis, Minn.), Camera, Bauer, and freshman Ivan Amillo Escobedo (Valencia, Spain). With that time, the team made both an NCAA cut and posted a new team record.
In the women's 400-yard individual medley, three Wildcats placed in the top eight to make the podium. junior Gabriella Spajic (Sydney, Australia) started the trend off by placing third with a time of 4:27.69. Following was sophomore Katharina Springhetti (Tramin, Italy) who placed sixth at 4:34.17 and junior Cassandra Clark (Newport News) finished eighth with a time of 4:39.21.
For the men, sophomore Filpe Lemos (Curitiba, Brazil) and freshman Erikas Kapocius (Ignalina, Lithuania) made the podium with Lemos touching fourth at a time of 3:58.96 and Kapocius took fifth at 3:59.10.
The women dominated the 100-yard butterfly, taking four of the top eight places. Nelson touched second at a time of 55.91. Font Cantarero hit the wall third at 56.07. Following quickly behind was Helm, finishing fourth at 56.24. Arnold finished with a time of 57.87 to take eighth for the women.
MIDDLE DISTANCE SUCCESS
The 200-yard freestyle also saw success for the women. Senior Nicola Pasquire (Bedford, England) touched fourth with a time of 1:53.63. Finishing fifth was freshman Pilar Perello Ferrer (Inca, Spain), who hit the wall at 1:53.91. Following in sixth was freshman Francesca Gastrow (Hartland, Wis.), finishing at 1:54.83.
Budai took second in the 200 free for the men, hitting the wall at 1:37.78. Busse also made the podium, finishing the race at 1:40.56.
The Wildcats advance to day three of GLIACs, competing in the 500-yard freestyle, 100-yard backstroke, 100-yard breaststroke, 200-yard butterfly, and women's 1-meter dive on Friday, February 21.