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Liberty Sets 4 Pool Records, Downs Richmond, 189-105, on Senior Night

October 31, 2014  Lynchburg, Va.  RSS
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The Liberty swimming & diving team put on an impressive performance for its home fans on Friday, downing Richmond, 189-105, in front of a standing-room only crowd at LaHaye Aquatic Center.

The Lady Flames now hold a 6-2 record on the season, and have won their last five home dual meets in a row, dating to the start of the 2011-12 season. Richmond (4-1) sustained its first setback of the season. The Lady Flames and Spiders have split two all-time meetings, with Richmond defeating Liberty, 152-138, Nov. 9, 2013 at the Robins Center Natatorium.

Friday's action saw the lowering of four pool records, all by Liberty swimmers. The Lady Flames took home victory in 13 out of 14 events, including both relays.

Prior to the meet, Liberty honored its 2013-14 CCSA Championship team with a ring ceremony, while also celebrating its current seniors.

Liberty junior Kendall Hough took home three event wins, placing first in the 100 back, 50 free and 100 free. Freshman Prudence Rooker won both the 100 breaststroke and 200 individual medley, while sophomore Heather McCorkel claimed victory in the 200 free and 500 free. Junior Hannah Wakeley also pocketed two victories, in the 1000 free and 200 fly. Senior Emily Duff (200 back) and sophomore Morgan Noonan (200 breaststroke) won one event apiece.

The Lady Flames won both relays, beginning with a 1:46.94 200 medley relay clocking by the quartet of Duff, Rooker, freshman Kendall Hart and senior Meghan Babcock.

Wakeley opened the individual races with a pool-record 10:26.18 in the 1000 free, while freshman Sarah Browning went 10:35.53 for second.

McCorkel earned her first win of the afternoon, swimming 1:52.32 to break her own 200 free pool standard. Freshman Rachel Hoeve placed third, in 1:58.23.

Hough made it three straight races in the meet with broken pool records, as she won the 100 back with a 56.63 clocking. Teammate Duff followed in second, at 58.26.

Rooker won the 200 individual medley with a pool-record time of 2:07.27, capping a successful individual-event program for the Lady Flames.

Earlier in the meet, Rooker went 1:05.58 to win the 100 breaststroke. Her time was the fastest by a Lady Flame this season. Noonan took second, in 1:07.47.

Wakeley came from behind to edge Richmond's Melissa Ross by .07 seconds in the closest race of the meet. Wakeley out-touched Ross, 2:06.49 to 2:06.56. Liberty junior Ranndi Grubbs swam 2:11.70 for third.

Hough led back-to-back 1-2-3 Liberty sweeps in the 50 and 100 free. She started by clocking 24.32 for a 50 free victory, followed by seniors Babcock (24.40) and Cori Gary (24.65) in that order.

Hough's 100 free victory came in 52.53, while Gary (53.18) placed second and Babcock (53.84) took third.

Duff, a senior, earned the top spot in the 200 backstroke, clocking 2:05.07. Junior Natalie Beale paced third, in a season-best 2:10.74.

Noonan and Rooker placed first and second, respectively, in the 200 breaststroke, with Noonan claiming victory over Rooker by a narrow margin, 2:22.85 to 2:23.08.

McCorkel earned her second victory of the day, clocking 5:06.55 during the 500 free. Senior Kristin Van Deventer went 5:10.01 for second place.

Richmond's Kelley Yang gave the Spiders their lone win, swimming 56.35 in the 100 fly. Hart (58.45) finished second for Liberty.

Liberty went 1-2 in the meet-ending 200 free relay, with freshman Chelsea Pond, McCorkel, Gary and Hough finishing first in 1:37.25.

Liberty will next compete at the Virginia Tech Invitational, held from Nov. 20-22 at the Christiansburg Aquatic Center. The meet will feature a three-day, championship format similar to that which will be used at the 2015 CCSA Swimming & Diving Championships.