Whit swimmers compete at NWC Sprint Pentathlon

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SPOKANE - Keller Hawkins and Katie Chapman for the women and Karl Mering, Galen Sollom-Brotherton and Paul Chang for the men posted the best all-around performances for the Whitman College swim teams at Friday night's Northwest Conference Sprint PentathloN.

Hosted by Whitworth University, the meet attracted more than 200 swimmers and gave all competitors the chance to swim in five events - the 100-yard individual medley (IM) and 50-yard sprints in the backstroke, breaststroke, butterfly and freestyle.

"Great swimming at the meet tonight," Whitman coach Jenn Blomme said. "A marathon of sprinting!"

"I'm really happy with how our swimmers performed."

Hawkins, a sophomore, finished second overall in the women's individual standings, which were determined by each swimmer's total time in the five races.

Hawkins was clocked in a total time of 3:00.44 for her races, which was less than one full second behind the first-place total.

Chapman, a junior, also cracked the women's Top 10, placing ninth in the combined scoring with a total time of 3:05.49.

Mering, a freshman, and Sollom-Brotherton, a junior, had the best performances for the Whitman men, placing third and fourth, respectively, in the individual standings.

Mering posted a total time of 2:38.99, which was one-half second faster than Sollom-Brotherton.

Chang, a junior, was 10th on the men's side with a 2:43.15 time total.

Hawkins, who was fourth overall at last year's sprint pentathlon, won Friday night's 50-yard backstroke in 28.69 and placed second in the 50-yard breaststroke in 32.78.

Hawkins also was seventh in the 100-yard IM and eighth in both the 50-yard butterfly and 50-yard freestyle.

Chapman took top honors in her best stroke, winning the 50-yard butterfly in 27.33. She also held her own in the 50-yard freestyle, placing 10th, and 100-yard IM, finishing 11th.

Mering was second (butterfly), third (freestyle), fourth (backstroke) and sixth (IM) in his best four races.

Sollom-Brotherton excelled all along the board, placing third in the IM, sixth in the backstroke and seventh in both the butterfly and freestyle. He added an 11th-place showing in the breaststroke.

Chang posted his best finishes in the breastroke (third) and IM (seventh).

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