Swimming & Diving Places 13th at ECAC Open Championship

Swimming & Diving Places 13th at ECAC Open Championship

PISCATAWAY, N.J. -- The Simmons College women's swimming & diving team wrapped up the third day of competition and placed 13th at the Eastern College Athletic Conference Championship at the Rutgers Aquatics Center on the campus of host Rutgers University in Piscataway, N.J.

The Sharks scored 93 points to finish ahead of University of Bridgeport and Roger Williams University as the highest-scoring Division III school at the meet. The United States Naval Academy won the ECAC Open crown with 584.5 points, followed by University of Pennsylvania (402) and Bucknell University (309).

Simmons closed out the final day of competition with the 400-yard freestyle relay team winning the consolation final and placing ninth overall with a time of 3:38.63 to better its preliminary time by more than five seconds. Sophomore Aine Scholand (Albuquerque, N.M.) opened the race, followed by junior Kerry Fleming (Northampton, Mass.) and first year Emily Buttafuoco (Londonderry, N.H.), before junior Laura Simpson (Perkiomenville, Pa.) made the final touch on the anchor leg.

Simpson also opened the night with a 15th-place effort in the 1650-yard freestyle with a time of 18:18.32 for the Sharks.

Fleming placed 20th in the morning's 200-yard backstroke prelims with a time of 2:13.39 for Simmons, while junior Jason Erichsen (Banks, Ore.) turned in a 20th-place showing as well with a time of 2:31.33 in the 200-yard breaststroke. First year Anna Leedham (Lowell, Mass.) continued the trend for the Sharks, finishing 20th in the 200-yard butterfly on a mark of 2:16.09. Scholand led five Simmons swimmers in the morning's 100-yard freestyle with a time of 54.95 to finish 41st, while Buttafuoco's time of 55.14 was good for 43rd. Sophomore Laura List (Bedford, Mass.) clocked in at 55.47 to place 50th, before first year Olivia Walz' (Natick, Mass.) time of 56.23, which was good for 56th place and first year Maria Soraghan (East Hampstead, N.H.), who finished 58th with a time of 56.73.

The meet marked the final competition of the season for every Shark, except for Scholand, who previously qualified in the 1650-yard and 500-yard freestyle events at the NCAA Championship in Indianapolis, Ind. on March 21-24. It was also the final career meet for seniors Natalie Giraldi (Bedford, N.H.) and Michaela Morris (Duxbury, Mass.).

Simmons finished its dual meet season with an 11-2 overall record to register double-digit wins for the fifth straight season in addition to winning its first-ever New England Intercollegiate Swimming & Diving Association Championship last weekend and its 14th straight Great Northeast Athletic Conference title in December.