Crusaders Finish Fifth at House of Champions Invitational
Saturday, February 19, 2005
Valparaiso closed its season on Saturday with a fifth place finish at the House of Champions Invitational held in Indianapolis, Ind.

The Crusaders tallied 441 points over the course of the three-day event. Northern Colorado was crowned the meet champion with 740 points, followed by Miami (Ohio) with 610. Eastern Illinois was third with 564 points, followed by Western Illinois (516) and the Crusaders. IUPUI finished sixth with 302 points, while Eastern Michigan (150) and Vincennes rounded out the field.

Britt Nelson (Cortland, N.Y./Homer H.S.) started the final session for the Crusaders with a third place finish in the 1650 freestyle, finishing with a time of 17:56.74. Maggie Kroemer (Brown Deer, Wis./Milwaukee Lutheran H.S.) finished seventh in the event with a time of 18:13.22 while Katie Ryan (Bremen, Ind./Bremen H.S.) was 15th turning in a time of 19:12.10.

The 200 backstroke saw four Crusaders score. Lauren Bambach (Dublin, Ohio/Coffman H.S.) led the way finishing sixth with a time of 2:14.71, while Katie Jajtner (Port Washington, Wis./Port Washington H.S.) was seventh finishing in 2:15.80. Cassidy Kuhlmann (Mount Prospect, Ill./Hersey H.S.) placed 11th (2:20.99) and Shannon McDonald (Crown Point, Ind./Marian Catholic H.S.) finished 15th (2:24.49).

In the 100 free, Leah Schneider (Sussex, Wis./Arrowhead H.S.) led the way finishing seventh with a time of 54.84 seconds, while Amanda Gregory (Carmel, Ind./Carmel H.S.) was one place behind with a mark of 55.00 seconds. Daniella Trombatore (Redding, Calif./Shasta H.S.) placed 12th with a time of 55.72 seconds.

The 200 breaststroke saw Allison Clark (Shorewood, Wis./Shorewood H.S.) turn in a sixth place effort with a time of 2:31.48, while Schneider was the only Crusader to score in the 200 butterfly, turning in a time of 2:17.77.

Valpo concluded the night with a third place finish in the 400 free relay, as Gregory, Nelson, Trombatore, and Schneider touched the wall in 3:39.50.