Women's Swimming and Diving competed in the Missouri Valley Conference Championship this past weekend in Iowa City, Iowa. Three school records went by the wayside in the course of the weekend, and junior Courtney Coverdale earned the first diving title the Aces have received in at least fifteen years with a win in 1-Meter. To top it all off, the 8-time MVC Diver of the Week was named the 2017 Diver of the Year, while Coach Andy Brown was named 2017 Diving Coach of the Year. All-Conference Honorable mention was awarded to Michaela Kent, Kristen Myers, Aine Scholand, and Sam Gowdy. Danielle Freeman and Coverdale received All-Conference First Team.
The final standings of the meet were: Missouri State—832.5, Southern Illinois—649, Northern Iowa—615, Illinois State—393.5, Evansville—365, Little Rock—303, Indiana State—148.
A full recap of the weekend's events is below:
The 500 freestyle was the first event slated for the night. Participating in the finals were freshmen Aine Scholand and Kristy Kupfer with times of 5:00.51 and 5:09.67, good for 12th and 20th place respectively. Scholand's time was a season best. In this morning's preliminary session, sophomore Bridget Sheridan clocked in at a 5:18.89 for a season best time.
The 200 IM came next on the schedule. Senior Taylor Davidson represented the Aces in finals with a 23rd place finish at a 2:10.74. Her preliminary time of 2:09.47 was a season best.
Junior Danielle Freeman and senior Michaela Kent both competed in the A-Final of the 50 freestyle and represented well. Freeman clocked in at 23.04, a half second drop from her preliminary time, to earn second place. Kent took seventh place spot on the podium with a 23.34. Freshman Emma Hennessy clocked in a 24.08 for 20th place, and Sam Gowdy's 24.33 was a lifetime best time good for 22nd place.
The highlight of the night came in the form of junior Courtney Coverdale, eight-time MVC Diver of the Week. Coverdale took to the boards tonight seeded first after the morning's preliminary round. She came out on top with a final score of 275.35. Her title is the first diving championship Evansville has taken in at least fifteen years. Junior Kasey Rein took 10th place with 188.85 points, and freshman Alyssa Vonder Haar placed 13th with 165.80.
To top off an already successful night, the 200 Freestyle Relay team of Freeman, freshman Emma Hennessy, sophomore Kristen Myers, and Kent outtouched the Southern Illinois relay by a mere two tenths of a second to score a third place finish and the final spot on the podium. Their final time was 1:33.10. Kent's final split of 22.6, a lifetime best, was the fastest of the meet, and would have been good for first place in the individual event.
Junior Jessi Hildebrand participated in the Evansville C Relay and clocked in a 25.45, a lifetime best 50 freestyle mark. Additionally, sophomore Kaylee Gubricky earned a best time with a 24.00 split on the B Relay.
In the 400 IM, freshmen Shaina Weisberg and Ashton Adams both returned for the final session. Weisberg touched first in the C-Final for 17th place at a 4:37.97, over a three-second drop from her preliminary mark. Adams took 22nd with a 4:47.21
Last year in the 100 butterfly, Kristen Myers took sixth place as a freshman. This year, the sophomore moved up a spot to take fifth place and the school record with a final time of 55.47. Junior Danielle Freeman competed in the consolation final, earning tenth place with a time of 56.68. In the preliminaries, junior Kasey Rein clocked in a lifetime best of 58.89.
The 200 freestyle held much individual success for the Aces. Sophomore Madi Jones took 16th in the consolation final, earning points for the Aces in the event for the first time since 2015. Freshman Aine Scholand clocked in a 1:55.37 for 21st place, followed by junior Jessi Hildebrand in 22nd at 1:56.21. Hildebrand's preliminary time of 1:56.06 was a lifetime best.
Points were scored for Evansville in the 100 breaststroke this evening, also for the first time since 2015. Junior Kayla Aitken clocked in a personal best time of 1:05.02 for 14th place, while freshman Alaina Sylvester followed at a 1:05.82 for 15th. In the preliminary session, sophomore Sylvia McFadden took a lifetime best with a 1:07.98.
Returning MVC champion Michaela Kent took to the water tonight in the 100 backstroke final, this time joined by sophomore Sam Gowdy. Kent snagged fifth place with a time of 55.68, however her time of 55.49 in the preliminary round broke her own school record set last year by .04 seconds.
Gowdy touched in shortly after at 56.28 for sixth place. Senior Taylor Davidson took points for the team touching in second in the consolation final for 10th place in a lifetime best time by nearly a second at 57.20.
The Aces finished the night with a sixth place finish in the 400 Medley Relay. Kent, Aitken, Myers, and Freeman teamed up to clock in at 3:48.75. Sophomore Kaylee Gubricky participated in the Evansville C-Relay and split a personal best 100 freestyle time of 54.19.
Freshman Alyssa Vonder Haar competed in the 3-Meter consolation final. She scored 182.70 points to take 4th place.
The final session began with the consolation finals of the 1650 freestyle. Freshman Ashton Adams swam the event in 18:21.98 for a 20th place finish. Sophomore Megan Schremp achieved a lifetime best time at 18:01.25, touching first in the heat and taking 17th overall. Freshman Aine Scholand was seeded 11th when she dove into the pool—she clocked in a 17:12.30. It wasn't until the top 8 seeded swimmers completed the race at the beginning of finals that Scholand took her spot on the podium in 5th place, her first collegiate top 8 finish. Her final time was also a lifetime best.
Next on the schedule was the 200 backstroke. Senior Taylor Davidson took to the pool in her very last individual event to emerge the winner of the consolation final. Her final time of 2:02.47 was a lifetime best and good for 9th place. Additionally, it broke her own school record of 2:03.63, set in 2014. Sophomore Sam Gowdy came next for the Aces with a lifetime best of 2:04.47 landing her in 11th place. Freshman Kristy Kupfer took 16th with a final time of 2:06.81, however her preliminary time of 2:06.62 was a lifetime best as well.
More Aces saw the podium upon the conclusion of the 100 freestyle. Senior Michaela Kent paced the Aces with a 50.68 and a fifth place finish. She clocked in a lifetime best in her final individual race of her career. Immediately following was junior Danielle Freeman in sixth place at 50.82. Sophomore Madi Jones competed in the C-Final, recording a 52.75. In the morning's preliminary session, sophomore Kaylee Gubricky recorded a 3 second drop for a lifetime best of 54.61.
Junior Kayla Aitken was the sole Evansville representative in tonight's 200 breaststroke final. She scored points for the Aces with a 16th place finish at a 2:23.63, nearly a two-second drop from her preliminary time and a lifetime best. In this morning's preliminary round, freshman Alaina Sylvester logged a lifetime best as well, with a 2:26.45.
Sophomore Kristen Myers continued her success in the 200 butterfly. After a two second improvement in the preliminary round, she dropped an additional second to clock in a final time of 2:04.47. Her performance smashed a sixteen year old school record of 2:04.55 set by Emily Tomes in 2001. Myers took the podium for the third time this weekend for fourth place. Junior Kasey Rein dropped a whopping 5 seconds from her preliminary time to clock in a 19th place earning 2:09.74, yet another lifetime best. Freshman Shaina Weisberg took a lifetime best this morning with a 2:11.66.
1-Meter champion Courtney Coverdale took to the boards tonight in the 3-Meter A-Final. A stellar performance earned her a second place finish with a final score of 272.05.
The Aces closed out the season with a fourth place finish in the 400 Freestyle Relay. Freeman, Jones, Myers, and Kent clocked in at 3:25.96.
Submitted by Erin Cary firstname.lastname@example.org