GRANVILLE, Ohio-- The Big Red women's swimming & diving team sits in second place through six events at the 2019 Denison Invitational. On Thursday night, Denison totaled 11 individual event NCAA 'B' cut times while placing first in four events. Eastern Michigan holds a narrow 20 point lead on the Big Red in the team standings with 639 points. Denison is second with 619 followed by Emory (483), Wayne State (282), and Washington-St. Louis (251).
One day after qualifying for the 2020 United States Olympic Trials, senior KT Kustritz just missed breaking her own school record in the 200 individual medley. Kustritz touched in 1:59.96, chopping 8.63 seconds off her entry time. Also posting 'B' cuts in the 200 IM was Natalie Zaravella who placed fifth in 2:04.04. Michaela Morrison placed seventh in 2:04.61 and first-year Savy Sargent finished in 2:05.25.
In the 50 free, Maddie Hopkins edged out her teammate, Gabriella Nutter by .01 to win the event. Hopkins touched in 23.21 while Nutter was the runner-up in 23.22. Casey Kirby placed seventh with a time of 23.68 in the finals but logged a season-best 'B' cut in prelims with a 23.59.
In the 200 free relay, the team of Nutter, Kirby, Hopkins, and Kustritz flirted with their own varsity record, hitting the wall with a winning 'B' cut time of 1:31.69. Swimming third on the relay, Hopkins led the group with a 22.57 split.
The same group closed out the night with a 400 medley relay victory with a 'B' cut time of 3:43.13.
The 1-meter diving preliminaries and finals took place in the afternoon and Denison senior Naomi Clayton led her squad with a seventh-place finish and a score of 226.30. Mattie Stauss also qualified for the finals and placed ninth in 2:15.25.
The 500 freestyle saw first-year Tara Culibrk touch in 4:57.13, likely punching her ticket to Greensboro. Culibrk placed fourth to lead four DU swimmers who recorded 'B' cuts. Following in seventh was Caroline Colville who touched in 5:00.09 in the finals but touched in 4:58.76 in prelims. Mia Chiappe finished 11th in 4:58.31 while Hannah Rusinko checked in 13th in 4:59.89.
Denison returns to the Trumbull Aquatics Center on Friday for preliminaries at 10 a.m. followed by finals at 6 p.m.