ATLANTA, Georgia -- The Texas A&M women’s swimming and diving team had another strong day and stands in third place after three days of competition at the Southeastern Conference Championships at the University of Georgia.
The Aggies scored solid points in every event on Thursday with at least one Championship finalist in every event but one. Texas A&M has a three-day total of 614 points and trails Georgia (879) and Florida (642) in the team standings. The gap between the third-place Aggies and fourth place (Tennessee with 439) was 175 points.
“We did a very good job getting people back for evening swims and improving from prelims to finals,” head coach Steve Bultman said. “We had a bunch of best times and I think we qualified a few more people for NCAAs, which is our goal.”
Texas A&M opened with the night with an impressive performance by junior Sarah Henry in the 400-yard IM, who touched the wall in 4:03.90 in third place. Her time was a season best and was just off her lifetime best of 4:04.04 from 2012.
The Aggies scored 68 points in the 100-yard butterfly with four swimmers earning evening swims. A&M put a pair in the Championship final with senior Caroline McElhany placing fifth in a season-best 52.48 and senior Paige Miller taking eighth in 52.99. Junior Sammie Bosma was third in the B final (11th overall) with a time of 53.42, while junior Emily Neubert was fourth in the C final in a lifetime best 53.28.
The Texas A&M dive crew contributed 23 points with freshman Madison Hudkins taking 13th with 309.90 and fellow freshman Zoe Alaniz placing 17th with 296.35.
The Aggies closed out the night with a 79-point outburst in the 200 freestyle as five swimmers earned evening swims. In the Championship final, junior Lili Ibanez took fifth in 1:44.96 and junior Kelli Benjamin was sixth in a lifetime best time of 1:45.48. Sophomore Meredith Oliver was second in the B final (10th overall) in a time of 1:46.91 and junior Ellen Quirke was seventh (15th overall) in 1:47.97. Sophomore transfer Colleen Konetzke scratched a point with a 1:49.83 effort.
After the evening finals were finished, senior Cammile Adams posted a time of 4:05.42 in the 400 IM in a time trial, after being disqualified for a double dolphin kick in the morning prelims of the race. Her time was a season best and an NCAA A cut.
“(The time trial) was purely her call,” Bultman said. “She didn’t want to go into the NCAA meet with a 4:07 seed time. She was very disappointed about the DQ, but she stayed positive and did a great job of responding to it.”
Aggies in the Top 24
3. Sarah Henry 4:03.90
5. Caroline McElhany 52.48
8. Paige Miller 52.99
11. Sammie Bosma 53.42
20. Emily Neubert 53.28
5. Lili Ibanez 1:44.96
6. Kelli Benjamin 1:45.48
10. Meredith Oliver 1:46.91
15. Ellen Quirke 1:47.97 (1:47.39p)
24. Colleen Konetzke 1:49.83 (1:47.88p)
13. Madison Hudkins 309.90
17. Zoe Alaniz 296.35
400 IM Time Trial
Cammile Adams 4:04.42