THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. — The Whitman College swim teams capped a week-long, semester-break training trip to southern California with a pair of strong showings at the Cal Lutheran Relays here on Wednesday.
The Missionary men, who trailed their Puget Sound counterparts by a single point heading into the last event, held onto second place in the final standings.
Meanwhile, the Whitman women finished a strong third.
The annual relay meet, which attracted five schools in all, was held at Cal Lutheran’s Samuelson Aquatics Center.
Puget Sound took first in the men’s team scoring with 355 points, finishing 15 points in front of Whitman in the final tally. Colorado College was third with 310 points, followed by Lewis & Clark with 284 and Cal Lutheran with 213.
On the women’s side, Puget Sound was a clear-cut winner with 416 points. Cal Lutheran was second with 320 points, nudging Whitman out of the runner-up spot by 12 points. Lewis & Clark was fourth with 284 points and Colorado College fifth with 213.
Whitman’s best showing came in the men’s 150-yard freestyle relay, where sophomore Mitchell Lee, freshman Paul Chang and junior Jamie Nusse posted a winning time of 1:07.27. Relay trios from Cal Lutheran and Puget Sound tied for second at 1:07.35.
Junior Lauren Flynn and first-year teammates Charlotte Graham and Helen Jenne came within four-tenths of a second of giving Whitman a matching victory in the women’s 150-yard freestyle. Their second-place time was 1:18.00.
Flynn, Graham and Jenne also teamed with first-year Missionary Libby Arnosti for a second-place finish in the 500-yard freestyle relay. Their time was 4:58.68.
Whitman teams took third in both 150-yard backstroke relay events. For the men, senior Eric Molnar teamed with Nusse and Chang for a time of 1:20.61. First-year junior Natalie Reilly joined Graham and Arnosti to clock a 1:32.40 in the women’s race.
The Missionary women added a third-place time of 1:43.69 in the 150-yard breaststroke. Sophomore Monica Boshart anchored a trio that included first-year swimmers Rebecca Ryle and Cari Cortez.
On their way home later this week, Whitman swimmers will stop in western Oregon for a pair of Northwest Conference dual meets. The Missionaries swim at Lewis & Clark in Portland at 6 p.m. Friday and at Willamette at 1 p.m. Saturday.
Both Whitman teams are 3-0 in NWC dual meets and 4-0 on the season.
The Missionaries wrap up the regular season later this month with home meets against Whitworth (3 p.m., Jan. 23) and Puget Sound (6 p.m., Jan. 29) in the Louise and Paul Harvey Pool at Baker Ferguson Fitness Center.
The NWC Championships are set for Feb. 12-14 at the King County Aquatic Center in Federal Way, Wash.