Whit Swim Teams in Second at NW Invite

News Release Date:
Saturday, November 20

WALLA WALLA, Wash. -- With Jamie Nusse and Paul Chang winning individual events and sharing in a relay victory, the Whitman College men's swim team is in second place after Saturday's opening day of the Northwest Invitational in Tacoma, Wash.

Day One
Evening Finals

Morning Prelims

Meanwhile, the Whitman women's squad also moved into second place as Lauren Flynn and Katie Chapman helped the Missionaries win both of Saturday's relay races.

Puget Sound was in first place in both the men's and women's scoring. The lead for the Loggers on the men's side, however, was a slim one over their Whitman counterparts.

Paul Chang

The Puget Sound men accumulated 247 points with Whitman 18 points back in the second spot. Next in line were Pacific Lutheran 191, Pacific 148, Linfield 113, and College of Idaho 38.

On the women's side, Puget Sound piled up 269 points. With 194 points, Whitman was in second, four points in front of Pacific Lutheran. Rounding out the bottom half of the women's team scoring were Pacific 154, Linfield 117, and College of Idaho 60.

Katie Chapman

Saturday's competition began with the morning preliminaries in the individual events. The top six swimmers in each event advanced to the evening's championship heats while the next six qualified for the consolation finals.

Whitman coach Jenn Blomme saw "some serious fatigue" in her swimmers in Saturday's morning preliminaries.

"This time of year is pretty intense academically so it has been a real challenge for our swimmers to get enough rest this week," she said.

"I hoped our teams would find some renewed vigor this evening, and they surpassed my wildest hopes."

The Whitman women won both relay events with Chapman and Flynn swimming a leg in each race. 

They teamed with Helen Jenne and Ellen Banks to take the 200-yard freestyle relay in 1:43.06, and they partnered with Keller Hawkins and Claire Collins to win the 400-yard medley relay in 4:11.39.

Nusse and Chang, along with Mitchell Lee and Shunei Asao, captured the men's 200-yard freestyle relay in 1:29.08.

Chang also won the 100-yard breaststroke in 1:01.64 (fifth-best time in school history) and was second in the 200-yard individual medley in 2:04.40 (eighth-best Whitman time).

Jamie Nusse

Nusse's individual event triumph came in the 100-yard freestyle, where he was clocked in 49.73, edging his nearest competitor by five one-hundredths of a second. Nusse also swam in the 500-yard freestyle, placing fourth.

Kevin Dyer was second for Whitman in the 500-yard free in 4:53.75, missing the top spot by less than three-tenths of a second.

Collins gave the Missionary women a third-place finish in the 100-yard breaststroke. Her time was 1:11.30, which moves her from eighth to fifth on Whitman's career best-times list.

Lauren Flynn

Jenne and Charlotte Graham finished third and fourth, respectively, in the 100-yard freestyle. Chapman in the women's 200-yard butterfly and Hawkins in the 200-yard backstroke both placed fourth.

The Whitman women also got sixth-place efforts from Graham in the 200-yard individual medley and Flynn in the 500-yard freestyle.

Saturday's finals in the individual events featured championship heats for the six swimmers who had the best times from the morning preliminaries. Swimmers who had the next-best six times from the morning swam in the evening's consolation finals.

Lee made the men's championship finals in two events, placing third in the 100-yard breaststroke and fourth in the 100-yard freestyle.

Matt Rowett and Matt Liedtke placed fourth and sixth, respectively, in the 200-yard butterfly. Nick Wood took fifth in the 100-yard breaststroke while Asao was sixth in the 200-yard backstroke.

Whitman men placing in the consolation finals were Rowett, 7th, 200-yard IM; Chad Trexler, 9th, 100-yard breaststroke; Brian Wakefield, 11th, 100-yard breaststroke; Chris Bendix, 9th, 200-yard backstroke; Andrew Roehrig, 11th, 200-yard backstroke; Nate Wells, 11th, 200-yard butterfly; and Colin Orr, 12th, 200-yard butterfly.

Genay Pilarowski placed seventh to lead a strong Whitman showing in the consolation finals of the women's 100-yard breaststroke. Monica Boshart was 10th and Cari Cortz 11th. 

Banks made the consolations in two events, placing eighth in the women's 100-yard freestyle and 11th in the 200-yard IM.

Libby Arnosti battled illness to swim in two consolation finals. She was eighth in the 200-yard backstroke and 12th in the 500-yard freestyle.

Mel Notari swam in the consolations of the women's 200-yard butterfly, placing eighth.

The invitational concludes Sunday with a second day of racing. The preliminaries start at 9 a.m. with the evening finals set for 5 p.m.

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CONTACT: Dave Holden
Sports Information Director
Whitman College, Walla Walla, Wash.
509 527-5902; holden@whitman.edu