Kaixuan Zhang took first-place in the prelims with a score of 329.70.
Feb. 13, 2014
CARBONDALE, Ill. - Southern Illinois wrapped up preliminaries in the first day of the MVC Championship with five swimmers and three divers advancing to tonight's A Finals. Tonight's finals session starts at 6 p.m. in the Dr. Edward J. Shea Natatorium in the SIU Student Rec Center.
The meet started with six heats of the 500-yard freestyle. Southern sent two swimmers to tonight's A Final and one to the B Final. Pamela Benitez (4:56.54) posted the top time in the event overall. Helena Amorim (5:01.93) also made the A Final with her sixth-place finish. Freshman swimmer Lauren Stockton (5:06.08) just missed the A Final and will hold the third-fastest time going into tonight's B Final.
The final swimming event of the preliminaries was the 50-yard freestyle, which was the fastest and most exciting event from the session. After eight heats, eleven women swam faster than 24 seconds. Three Salukis swam fast enough to compete in A and B Finals tonight. Luisa Silveira finished with the fourth best time in the event (23.67). Shailey Brumley followed close behind, finishing seventh with a time of 23.76. Holly Johnson will compete in tonight's B Final and will hold the fourth-fastest time in the final after swimming a 24.04 in the preliminaries.
Southern placed all three competing divers in the top-five in the one-meter dive preliminaries. Kaixuan Zhang took first-place in the prelims with a score of 329.70, nearly two points better than teammate Esther Chen who finished with a score of 327.55. Saluki senior Brittany Weigel claimed fourth place, scoring 282.90 in the event. The Salukis place three divers in the A Finals that begin Thursday night at 6 p.m. Illinois State's Wenting Zhang, the defending champion in the event, posted the third-best score in the contest (323.60).
Tonight's finals session starts at 6 p.m. The schools will complete in three heats in all of the individual events from today's preliminary session. The meet will finish with the 200-yard freestyle relay and 400-yard medley relay. There will be two heats of each relay this year.