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Thundering Herd Finishes Third Again at C-USA Championships

Anna Lynch
Anna Lynch
Feb. 25, 2018

ATLANTA - Marshall finished third for the third time in as many years at the 2018 Conference USA Swimming & Diving Championships.

Saturday evening was highlighted by more program all-time performances.

The evening began with another one of the Thundering Herd’s strongest events. Like the 400 IM Friday, Marshall scored all five of its entries. Anna Lynch broke the school record in the 1000 Freestyle on the way to a 16:37.86 fourth-place finish. Her split of 9:59.91 is the first Marshall swimmer to break the benchmark 10-minute barrier. Freshman Cara Martin dropped another 21 seconds off her seed time to finish eighth in 16:53.71. That time is a 31-second improvement on the season and now ranks fifth all-time in Marshall history. Teammate Oda Gjerde also cracked the Marshall all-time top ten with a 10th-place finish in 16:54.66. Both Martin's and Gjerde's 1000 yard splits rank eighth (10:14.41) and ninth (10:14.42) all-time. Sophomore Angelica di Marzio finished 11th with a 16:56.25, achieving a lifetime-best 10:09.69 at the 1,000-yard mark for the fourth-fastest 1,000 in school history. The fifth scorer was Savannah Ruedt, scoring for the fourth consecutive year in the event. Ruedt finished 14th in 17:14.46.  



The 200 Backstroke featured Caroline Wanner's sixth-place finish. Despite slipping on the start, Wanner kept her composure and completed the race in her lifetime-best (2:00.55) and fifth-fastest time in program history. Jordyn O'Dell improved on her prelim time to place 12th overall in 2:02.51. Swimming in the Bonus Final, Madi Pulfer also dropped time from her morning mark to 2:05.38.

Catherine Bendziewicz once again set the top Marshall finish in the following event. Completing the 100 Freestyle in the third-fastest Marshall time ever, Bendziewicz finished sixth in 50.18. Darby Coles finished 13th overall in 51.28 and Hannah Robins was 16th in 51.85.  

Senior Emma Lockyer put a cap on her collegiate career in her final swim. She finished eighth in the 200 Breaststroke in 2:16. 82. That time is the third-fastest time ever by a Marshall student-athlete. Rachel Hughes made adjustments to her preliminary swim and dropped 4.25 seconds to finish 20th overall and fourth in the Bonus Final. Her time of 2:22.00 is the eighth-fastest time in school history.

The last individual swimming event was the 200 Butterfly. Shir Wasserman was eighth in 2:04.49. Maddie Schaffer raced from third with 50 yards to go to win the Consolation Final in 2:03.70. Brittany Wilkerson competed in the Bonus Final and finished 23rd overall in 2:10.90.

Maddie Young represented Marshall on Platform Diving. She finished eighth with a score of 177.05. Her preliminary score of 183.25, was the third-best score by a Marshall Diver on Platform.

The Championships concluded with the 400 Freestyle Relay. Marshall battled hard but finished just out of the medal podium. The team of Robins (51.80), Bendziewicz (49.87), Maggie Stovall (50.84) and Coles (50.19) swam the second-fastest time in school history, 3:22.70. Marshall also competed a "B" relay.  That relay ended with the 11th-fastest time in school history (3:29.58). The team of Rachael DePietro (52.93), O'Dell (51.31), Kristine Sullivan (52.86) and Ruedt (52.48) won the Consolation Final Heat.

"We had so many great swims this weekend,” Marshall head coach Bill Tramel said. "There were also some folks that fought through adversity in a remarkable way. It's sad to see our seniors move on to the next chapter in their lives, but we have a young core that showed great maturity and will continue to improve as they learn more."

Final Team Scores

  1.  Florida International - 1031
  2.  Rice - 781
  3.  MARSHALL - 513
  4.  North Texas - 442
  5.  Florida Atlantic - 319
  6.  Old Dominion - 315

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