The Valparaiso University swimming teams opened their respective conference championship meets Wednesday with strong performances. The Valpo men kicked off the Summit League Championships in Sioux Falls, S.D. with a school-record swim in the 800 free relay, while the women’s team started off the MVC Championships in Columbia, Mo. with a pair of performances that entered into the program’s record books.
Men – Summit League Championships
- In the 800 freestyle relay, senior Mac Sogandares (Reston, Va./South Lakes), senior Robbie Bretl (Wauwatosa, Wisc./Marquette University H.S), senior Dylan Kirar (Arvada, Colo./Ralston Valley), and freshman Dominic May (Naperville, Ill./Naperville Central) would finish with a time of 6:52.33, good for the all-time program best in the event. It edged by .24 of a second the previous record of 6:52.57, set in 2009.
- Valpo closed the opening day of action in sixth place.
Women – MVC Championships
- Valpo started off strong in the first event, the 200 medley relay. The relay team of freshman Isabel Jenny (New Albany, Ohio/New Albany), junior Emily Baumgartner (Fishers, Ind./Fishers), junior Erica Martins (Hartland, Wisc./Lake County Lutheran), and freshman Maddie Wright (Surprise, Ariz./Paradise honors) catapulted themselves into seventh all-time at Valpo by touching the wall at 1:49.29.
- The Valpo women’s 800 freestyle relay team of Martins, Jenny, freshman Alexis Orange (Porter, Ind./Chesterton), and junior Paige Wright (Surprise, Ariz./Paradise honors) would touch the wall in 7:54.97. That time is good for eighth all-time in Valpo swimming history.
- The women closed the day in eighth place.
The Summit League Championships continue on Thursday, Feb. 21 with the second day of competition. Prelims start at 10 a.m., with event finals at 5 p.m. The MVC Championships continue with day two as well, with prelims at 11 a.m. and finals at 6 p.m.