RIVER EDGE, CALIF. – The NM State swim and dive team used the strong performances of several Aggies, including the seniors Maude Boily-Dufour to claim second place in his final competition before the new year. In total, the Aggies racked up 1,234 points as a team, finishing as one of two teams to eclipse the 1,000 point mark this weekend.
The Aggies finished just over 100 points behind the Northern Arizona Powerhouse while also totaling nearly 500 points more than third and host school California Baptist.
HIGHLIGHTS OF THE SECOND SESSION
· In Saturday’s series of events, the Aggies won seven top spots and posted four best Aggie times of the season.
· Day two also saw the Aggies record four top-10 WACs this season as the 100-yard medley, 200 backstroke, 100 butterfly and 100 breaststroke finishers each rank among the best in the conference.
· Lindsay Puhalski gave the Aggies a boost as she clinched first place in the day’s opener, taking first place in the 400 IM with a time of four minutes and 23.24 seconds.
· Jordan Andrusak also competed well alongside Puhalski as she placed third in the 400 IM (4: 26.34).
The 100 fly event was one of the Aggies’ strongest of the day as NM State swimmers took places two to six with Maude Boily-Dufour in the lead with a time of 55.70.
· Boily-Dufour’s mark was good for an Aggie’s fastest time this season and ranks eighth all-time in program history. It was also good for the sixth fastest in the WAC so far.
The native of Sarnia, Ontario, Canada then bolstered her performance in the 100 butterfly with a first place in the 100 backstroke, hitting the wall at 55.29.
The Aggies carried over their success in the relay events to day two as Lindsay Puhalski, Airaim Oliva-Aun, Lauren Hemburrow and Neza Kocijan combined to post the WAC’s fastest 800 free relay time this season (7: 27.67).
NM State’s best result in any diving event came at the height of one yard as Italy Aranzabal finished in 6e place with a score of 237.00. She was also the Aggies’ top scorer in the three-meter event later in the day.
· The Aggies’ best event of the day came in the second race of the afternoon as swimmers from NM State swept the top three spots in the 100 IM.
· Aimee Burton led the way for the Aggies as she clocked the fastest time of the year in the WAC 100 IM, finishing in just 57.13. Jordan Andrusak and Skylar Welle followed closely behind as they swam with times of 58.29 and 59.15, respectively.
· Boily-Dufour was back to contend for the WAC swimmer of the week title as she clocked 1: 57.92 to set a new pool record at the Lancer Aquatic Center and take first place in the 200 backstroke. It is also the fastest time a clock has shown in the event for the Aggies this season and the fourth fastest in NM State history. In addition, her performance was good for the second fastest in the WAC of the year.
· To top Boily-Dufour’s swim, the Aggies scored twice in the 200 backstroke thanks to Puhalski’s swim in 2: 02.47.
The Aggies also placed three top-five swimmers in the 100 freestyle when Aimee Burton took the first (51.37), Neza Kocijan took the third (52.34) and Airam Oliva-Aun fourth (52.41)
Graduate student Katherine harston joined in the action, recording the team’s fastest time in the 200 butterfly this year to finish third in the event. Her time was 2:05:10.
· The 400 freestyle relay team of Burton, Oliva-Aun, Puhalski and Kocijan finished the day with another first place as they combined for a time of 3: 26.40.
QUOTE | HEAD COACH RICK PRATT
“It was a great experience for our team, and we have been swimming really hard the past two days,” noted Pratt. “Having several best races of the season in this configuration will pay ten times as much at the end of the season. The attitude and focus of our team was really inspiring and it was great to see them push each other to the end.
Aggie swimmer and divers get a nice break before resuming competition on Jan. 8 when they host to compete in the Grand Canyon and Ottawa (AZ). The meeting with the two Arizona schools will be just a one-day event, with the first race set to start at around 11:30 am (MT). It will also be the first time that NM State has participated in the NM State Swimming and Diving Complex since they hosted northern Colorado on October 9 of this year.