Jan. 28, 2012
HOUSTON - Junior Kayla Alf-Huynh and sophomore Rachel Ranson posted third-place finishes in the 50 free and 200 free, respectively, and the Green Wave relay teams followed suit with third-place showings in the 200 and 400 free team events, but it was not enough as the Tulane University women's swimming and diving team fell short in a triple-dual meet over the weekend at the University of Houston's Campus Recreation and Wellness Center.
Alf-Huynh clocked a 24.10 in the 50 free to lead the Green Wave effort in the event while Ranson timed out at 1:54.86 to do the same in the 200 free. The quartet of Hagar Elgendy, Lauren Pfohl, Kristine Gu and Ranson joined forces to post a 3:33.30 in the 400 relay while the combination of Alf-Huynh, Elgendy, Gu and Ranson time out at 1:36.79 in the 200 free relay.
Alf-Huynh, Ranson and the relay teams performances were four of the Green Wave's 31 top-10 finishes for the weekend. In the end, however, Tulane fell to Rice 201.5-140.5, to LSU 265.5-98.5 and to Houston 258.0-111.0.
"Despite the final outcome of the meet, we had a great weekend of swimming and diving," Tulane head coach Lena Guarriello said. "The team did a fantastic job of racing smart and Sadie (Eicher) completed a full list of dives on tower today, including an arm stand from the 10-meter tower. This weekend really showcased the team's progress to-date and their tremendous growth as a program."
The team of Alf-Huynh, Erin Cunningham, Grace Tarka and Elgendy clocked a 1:49.70 to finish sixth in the 200 medley relay, two spots ahead of Vanessa Loewen, Caitlin Corcoran, Emily Needham and Cari Caprio's mark of 1:52.75. Allie Evans led the Tulane effort in the 1000 free with a mark of 10:34.57 to finish seventh while Gisele Calderon (58.80), Amy Needham (59.57) and Emily Needham (1:00.01) finished fifth, sixth and ninth in the 100 fly, respectively.
Alf-Huynh added an eighth-place finish in the 100 back (1:00.00) and Ranson chipped in with a team-best 52.82 to in the 100 free to finish fourth. Loewen was 10th in the 100 back at 1:00.29. Following Ranson in the 200 free, Calderon was eighth with a time of 1:55.96 and Lauren Pfohl finished 10th at 1:56.83. Elgendy finished fifth in the 50 free at 24.40 while Gu was tied for 10th with a 24.80. Elgendy was also tied for eighth in the 100 free with a time of 53.32.
Pfohl (2:08.90), Loewen (2:09.69) and Cunningham (2:09.98) posted respective finishes of sixth, eighth and 10th in the 200 back while Calderon (2:10.62) and Emily Needham (2:11.25) were seventh and eighth in the 200 fly. Cunningham also led Tulane with a 2:09.20 in the 200 IM to finish fifth.
In relay action, Tulane tallied an additional sixth-place finish in the 400 free as Allie Evans, Amy Needham, Elizabeth Whitaker and Caprio clocked a 3:40.59. In the 400 medley relay, the team of Loewen, Cunningham, Amy Needham and Ranson finished fifth with a 4:00.66 while Alf-Huynh, Shelby Kiser, Calderon and Gu were three places back at 3:30.59. Caprio, Allie Evans, Whitaker and Amy Needham posted a 1:41.14 in the 200 free relay to finish seventh.
Eicher, meanwhile, tallied sixth-place finishes in all three diving events - scoring a 206.55 in the one-meter springboard, a 210.10 in the 3-meter springboard and a 158.55 in the platform.
Corcoran led the Green Wave effort in the 200 breast with a 2:31.37 to finish 13th, Calderon finished 11th in the 500 free with a time of 5:11.12 and Claire Schelske posted a 1:09.85 to finish 14th in the 100 breast. Laura Turpen paced Tulaen in the 400 IM with a 4:43.44.
"Kristine Gu was outstanding on the relays and Gisele Calderon also stood out for the team over the two-session meet," Guarriello said. "I was also really impressed with Erin Cunningham who had probably her best meet so far this season. This meet was just what the swimmers and diver needed heading into conference. I'm excited to see these girls swim rested in a few weeks. I know we're going to see some amazing performances."
Tulane will close out the 2011-12 season at the Conference USA Swimming and Diving Championship on Feb. 15-18 in Houston.