HOUSTON, Texas – CSU Bakersfield's men's and women's swimming and diving teams wrapped up the 2017 Western Athletic Conference with another WAC Champion and more school records on Saturday.
“Paola and Lovre had a giant night,” said Chris Hansen, CSUB’s Director of Swimming. “I take that back, they had a giant week! Paola breaking the 50-second barrier in the 100 free is great for our program. I’m so excited to see her go out on such a high note. Lovre was three for three with school records and just missed his 100 free record by one one-hundredth of a second.”
Hansen went on to applaud the rest of his top performers from Saturday’s final day: “I said before we came that the men’s sophomore class would be big time and they were. However, the sophomore women, Sabrina, Darya, and Lexi matched Justice, Jake, Jaren, Greg, and Owen with their successes. This class is something to watch.”
“The freshman class really handled themselves great,” Hansen said of his newest ‘Runners. “For the women, the underclassmen showed they are ready to take over. Hannah also showed us she is ready to take control of the diving events. As bittersweet as it is to see our seniors graduate, it is comforting to see our underclassmen step up.”
Lovre Soric, a junior, qualified fifth overall for the finals of the 200 back with a time of 1:46.83 in the prelims, less than a second off of his personal best time. In the finals, the native of Croatia posted a school record time of 1:45.14, breaking the six-year-old record by over four tenths of a second. Soric’s finish was good for third overall, another bronze medal, and another US Open and World Trial qualifier.
Justice Kramer (1:49.02) and Luka Seles (1:50.36) both earned spots in the B-finals in the 200 fly. Kramer cut his time by a whole second (1:48.01), posting the third-fastest time in CSUB history and making a US National cut.
The men’s 400 free relay team of Soric, Owen van Krimpen, Jaren Hopkins, and Richie Campbell also qualified for US Nationals with a time of 2:59.23, the fourth-best mark in CSUB history. The ‘Runners placed fifth overall. Soric led the way with a lead-off leg of 44.33, just .01 off of his own school record.
Tyler Greenwald missed out on qualifying for the platform diving finals by one spot. The senior posted a score of 210.50 in the prelims to place ninth overall.
Paola Hernandez qualified first in the 100 free one day after winning the 200 free title. Her prelims time of 50.15 was a new personal best and moved the senior into second all-time for CSUB. Freshman Morgan King qualified for the B-final with a new PR of 52.09.
In the finals, Hernandez improved her PR to 49.94, an NCAA B cut, and made the senior the first ‘Runner woman to go under 50 seconds since Loni Burton set the school record (49.33) in 2005. In the B-final, King lowered her PR again to 51.64 and is now just over a second out of the school’s Top 5 all-time list.
Freshman Alyssa Madero qualified for the B-final in the 200 back (2:05.12). In the finals, she lowered her time to 2:03.59, just .05 off of the CSUB Top 5 in the event.
Senior Dylana Milobar earned a spot in the B-final in the 200 breast with a time of 2:20.52 and lowered that mark to 2:20.14 to finish 12th overall.
With the conclusion of the 2017 Western Athletic Conference Swimming and Diving Championships, the Roadrunner swimmers will wait to see if any of the several NCAA B cuts posted this week will be accepted as at-large bids to the NCAA Championships. The ‘Runners will send at least one diver, Carlee Burks, to the NCAA Zone E Diving Championships in March.
For full meet results, open the linked PDF above.