KINGSTON, R.I. - Junior Miriam Swisher (Albuquerque, N.M.) was named the Bruce Hutchinson Female Swimmer of the Meet and led the Simmons College swimming & diving team to third place at the 2016 New England Intercollegiate Swimming & Diving Association Championships following the final day of competition tonight at host University of Rhode Island's Tootell Aquatics Center in Kingston, R.I.
The Sharks totaled 1093 points to finish third out of 21 teams for the third straight year. Roger Williams University won the team title with a score of 1453 points, while Keene State College placed second with 1386 points.
Simmons saw nine competitors earn All-NEISDA status in 19 different events during the weekend, by virtue of a top-eight individual finish or a top-four placing in the relay events. The Sharks also saw nine team records broken during the meet. Swisher and first year Kerry Fleming (Northampton, Mass.) topped the squad with a total of seven medals during the meet, while sophomore Natalie Giraldi (Bedford, N.H.) and first year Laura Simpson (Perkiomenville, Pa.) won six medals each. Swisher and Simpson also won a pair of individual championships to become the first competitors in school history to win multiple individual events. Swisher also set a meet record in the 200-yard freestyle on Saturday. Sophomore Michaela Morris (Duxbury, Mass.) earned five medals and juniors Hannah Plourde (Westfield, Mass.) and Julie Nguyen (Salem, Mass.) each won three medals. Juniors Jordan Mattheisen (Seattle, Wash.) and Sarah Price (New York, N.Y.) earned one medal apiece as well.
Swisher began the night by placing second in the 100-yard freestyle with a time of 51.90, while Fleming finished fourth with a mark of 54.75. Price turned in a personal-record effort of 56.74 to finish 11th for Simmons. Later in the night, Swisher broke her own school record in the 50-yard freestyle in a time trial, clocking in at 23.80, which was also good enough for the NCAA "B" cut mark. The new standard was the fourth that Swisher set during the weekend.
Simpson broke her third school record for the meet with a time of 17:46.95 to top her own mark in the 1650-yard freestyle by over 11 seconds and finish second for the silver medal in the race. Senior Alex Vutech (Woodstock, Vt.) closed out her collegiate career by placing 12th with a personal-best time of 19:33.74.
Morris hit the wall at 2:19.74 to place fourth in the 200-yard butterfly. First year Kara Smith (Eastham, Mass.) clocked in with a personal-best time of 2:22.57 to place 10th, before sophomore Lindsay Nichols (Kennebunk, Maine) finished 13th with a mark of 2:30.62.
Plourde posted a time of 2:37.19 to place fifth in the 200-yard breaststroke. Giraldi finished 11th on a time of 2:40.08, while Price registered a time of 2:41.92 to place 13th. First year Jason Erichsen (Banks, Ore.) finished 14th with a time of 2:43.39.
Nguyen finished eighth in the 100-yard individual medley with a personal-record time of 1:05.80, while first year Charlotte Rivard (Norwood, Mass.) placed 13th with a mark of 1:06.91. Erichsen finished 16th in the race with a time of 1:09.51.
The Sharks placed third with a time of 3:39.74 in the 400-yard freestyle relay to close out the championships. Fleming set the pace as the leadoff leg, followed by Simpson and Giraldi, while Swisher swam the anchor clip.
Simmons will be in action again when it competes at the Eastern College Athletic Conference Championships at the United States Naval Academy in Annapolis, Md. on February 26-28.