Nashville, Tenn. — The Western Kentucky University women’s swimming and diving team took the lead early on Friday at the Sun Belt Conference Swimming and Diving Championships at Tracy Caulkin Pool at Nashville Centennial Sportsplex and expanded it to a 64 point advantage after Friday’s finals. The Hilltoppers remained in third after day two.
The Lady Toppers have totaled 517 points to Denver’s 453. The Hilltoppers have 371.5 points and are behind Denver at 462 and Missouri State at 484.
The Lady Toppers swept the top two finishes in the 100 Fly. Claire Donahue broke both the school and Sun Belt Conference record and made the NCAA ‘B’ cut with her first place finish at 54.21. Chelsea Stephens followed right behind, breaking the former school and SBC record with her time of 54.75. She also made the NCAA ‘B’ cut time.
Claire Alexandre took the title in the 200 Free with a time of 1:50.25. The time broke the Sun Belt record and was good enough for the NCAA ‘B’ cut line.
WKU also broke the SBC and school record in the women’s 200 Medley Relay in a time of 1:42.73. Jessica Aspinall, Brittany Doss, Donahue, and Mallory Neltner swam the event.
Three Toppers placed in the 100 Breast with Brittany Doss taking first and breaking a school record in 1:02.86. Stephens came in fifth (1:04.89) and Kelly Hargather was seventh in 1:05.27.
WKU collected three finalists in the 100 Back. Mallory Neltner took sixth in the 100 Back in 57.13, Stephanie Terrell was seventh at 57.34, and Jennifer Adams tallied eighth in 57.63.
Kathryn Sutton and Katie Sweeney finished fifth and seventh, respectively, in the 400 Individual Medley. Sutton swam the race in 4:30.37 and Sweeney followed close behind in 4:33.39.
For the Hilltoppers, the 100 Breast proved well for WKU with Cameron Brown earning fourth in the 100 Breast in 56.87 and Bryan Mell was eighth in 57.88.
Lukasz Herbst hit the wall in seventh for the 200 Free in 1:41.25 and Kevin Cargill was eighth in 1:41.69.
Greg Gerum took fifth in the 400 IM in 3:59.15, Brian Lewis earned fifth in the 100 Fly in 49.12, and Mike Caruso was fifth in the 100 Back in 50.61.
Peyton Thomas took seventh in the three-meter diving competition, scoring 273.35 in the finals.
The final day of the event starts at 10:30 a.m. (CST) on Saturday and finals will begin at 5:30 p.m.