LEWISBURG, Pa. – Navy successfully defended its Patriot League Swimming and Diving Championships Saturday night, completing wire-to-wire leads in both the men’s and women’s competitions at Bucknell's Kinney Natatorium. The Navy men won with 995.5 points, while the women won their second straight crown with 836 points.
Navy extended its own streak with its 10th straight championship, while taking over the overall lead on the men's side with 10 crowns. Army is second with nine men's championships. Meanwhile, the Mids won their 12th women's title overall, their fourth in seven years and their first back-to-back titles since 1997.
The women held an advantage over second-place Bucknell, which captured 670 points. Colgate was third with 655, while Army took fourth with 542 points. Fifth place went to Lehigh with 312 points, while Lafayette (185), Holy Cross (120) and American (117) finished out the women's standings.
Over on the men's side, Army captured second place with 734 points, while Bucknell claimed third with 543.5. Lehigh was fourth with 393.5 points, ahead of American in fifth with 270 and Colgate in sixth with 189. Lafayette secured seventh with 178 points, and Holy Cross had 133.5.
Watch below for comments from Navy head women's coach John Morrison and Navy head men's coach Bill Roberts for their reactions on this year's victories and looking ahead to next year.
Navy senior Justin Vagts won the men's 1,650 free Saturday night, his third individual victory of the three-day event and was named Male Swimmer of the Meet for the second year in a row. Navy senior Laura Gorinski captured her second straight Female Swimmer of the Meet honor after winning the 200 IM and sweeping the two breaststrokes.
The third Mid to secure a major award was freshman Thomas Duvall, who was named Male Rookie of the Meet. Bucknell freshman Emma Levendoski was honored as the Female Rookie of the Meet, the first Bison so named.
Army senior Chris Nguyen successfully defended his titles in the one- and three-meter dives and was named Male Diver of the Meet for the third straight year. Bucknell sophomore Katie Hetherington scored big points off the three-meter board and was awarded the Female Diver of the Meet accolade.
Hetherington and teammate Tara Boyle swept the women's diving events, with the latter securing the one-meter title for the second straight year. That success helped garner Bucknell's Errol Carter the Diving Coach of the Year honor for the second straight season and third time overall.
Following Army's strong second-place finish, Mickey Wender was voted the Men's Coach of the Year by his peers Saturday night. Joining him was Bucknell's Dan Schinnerer, who was honored as the Women's Coach of the Year.
Saturday's finals session began with Bucknell's Kelly Pontecorvo winning the women's 1,650 free. She time a 16:30.95 to win gold, while Navy's Rachel Dudley ran second in 16:51.96. Fellow Mid Ange Sawick took third in 16:56.40.
Vagts took the men's mile title in 15:10.31, beating out Duvall for the top spot on the awards podium. Duvall won silver with a time of 15:21.74, while freshman Alex Nickell completed a Navy sweep of the medals. He won bronze with a time of 15:26.77.
Nguyen scored 359.10 points to win the one-meter diving title. Navy's Ben Freedman settled for silver with 326.35 points, while Army's Zach Woods captured third place by scoring 321.20 points.
Levendoski clocked a 1:57.71 to win the women's 200 back at the championship meet. She edged out Navy's Lauren Baguley, who timed a 1:58.48 for the silver medal. The bronze medalist in the race was Navy freshman Zoe Macfarlane (2:00.53).
The men's 200 back title went to Navy's Conor Campbell, who swam a 1:47.54 to win the race. He was just over a second better than the field, with second going to Navy's Joe Stark. American junior Matt Wurm ran a strong third in 1:48.79.
Bucknell picked up another gold on the women's side when Lauren Perry touched the wall first in 50.86 to capture the 100 free. Lehigh's Carolyn Koch impressed with a 50.99 for the silver, while Colgate's Sami Wary was one-hundredth of a second behind to settle for the bronze in third.
Hugh Davison won the men's 100 free with a first place time of 44.47, beating out Army's Chris Szekely, who took second with a 45.01 clocking. Third place when to another Black Knight in Dan Foky (45.28).
Gorinski completed her four-year dominance of the breaststroke events, taking the 200 in 2:12.93. She's the first women's student-athlete swimmer to sweep both the 100 and 200 breasts at all four championships. Colgate's Emma Santoro touched the wall second in 2:14.25, and Bucknell's Emily Norton was third in 2:16.87.
Navy's Sean Murphy won the men's 200 breast with a time of 1:58.97, coming in ahead of teammate Luke Hoffer, who settled for second in 1:59.28. The Mids completed the medal sweep when Ben Grove took the bronze in 1:59.43. All three are juniors.
Navy's Rheanna Vaughn broke the Patriot League and meet record in the women's 200 fly, posting a winning time of 1:58.40. She snapped her own record of 1:58.77 that she set two years ago at the 2011 championships. Colgate's Ryan Marynowski won the silver medal in 2:00.36, and Toni Paruso captured the bronze in 2:00.82.
The men's 200 fly title went to Ben Bondurant, who won the last individual race of his Patriot League Championships career. He touched the wall first in 1:46.00, defeating teammate Jonathan Debaugh by 41-hundredths of a second. Army senior Ayman Andrews clocked a 1:47.13 for the bronze.
Hetherington captured the three-meter diving title with 300.55 points, coming out ahead of the top-seeded diver entering the weekend in Colgate's Kim Pilka. Pilka took the silver with 295.45 points, and American's Melissa Parker was third with 266.50 points.
The final races of the championships were the 400 free relays. The Colgate women timed a 3:23.43 to claim the gold medal, while Navy's foursome was second in 3:24.79, and Bucknell's took the bronze in 3:28.13.
Navy captured the men's 400 free relay title in 2:58.91, getting a good push from second-place Army, which clocked a 2:59.38. Lehigh earned third place with a time of 3:02.07.
The 2014 Patriot League Swimming and Diving Championships will return to Navy's Lejeune Hall in Annapolis, Md., from Feb. 19-22.
Day Three Results Women’s 1,650 Free – Kelly Pontecorvo, Bucknell – 16:30.95 Men’s 1,650 Free – Justin Vagts, Navy – 15:10.31 Men’s 1-Meter Diving – Chris Nguyen, Army – 359.10 Women’s 200 Back – Emma Levendoski, Bucknell – 1:57.71 Men’s 200 Back – Conor Campbell, Navy – 1:47.94 Women’s 100 Free – Lauren Perry, Bucknell – 50.86 Men’s 100 Free – Hugh Davison, Navy – 44.47 Women’s 200 Breast – Laura Gorinski, Navy – 2:12.93 Men’s 200 Breast – Sean Murphy, Navy – 1:58.97 Women’s 100 Fly – Rheanna Vaughn, Navy – 1:58.40 * Men’s 100 Fly – Ben Bondurant, Navy – 1:46.00 Women’s 3-Meter Diving – Katie Hetherington, Bucknell – 300.55 Women’s 400 Free Relay – Colgate (Sami Wary, Lindsey Sagasta, Emma Santoro, Lia Kunnapas) – 3:23.43 Men’s 400 Free Relay – Navy (Ben Bondurant, Riley Weber, Daniel Bowden, Hugh Davison) – 2:58.91
^ - Patriot League and Championship record
Major Awards Male Swimmer of the Meet – Justin Vagts, Navy, Sr. Female Swimmer of the Meet – Laura Gorinski, Navy, Sr. Male Rookie of the Meet – Thomas Duvall, Navy Female Rookie of the Meet - Emma Levendoski, Bucknell Male Diver of the Meet – Chris Nguyen, Army, Sr. Female Diver of the Meet – Katie Hetherington, Bucknell, So. Diving Coach of the Year – Errol Carter, Bucknell Men’s Coach of the Year – Mickey Wender, Army Women’s Coach of the Year – Dan Schinnerer, Bucknell