The Liberty swimming & diving team wasted no time getting accustomed to the brand-new Liberty Natatorium, as the Lady Flames posted a dominant opening night at the Central Virginia Duals, Friday. After the first day of this weekend's two-day meet, Liberty leads Campbell, 134-33, as the Lady Flames captured all nine events (seven individual, two relays). This weekend's meet is the first in Liberty Natatorium history.
Division III schools Ferrum, Hampden-Sydney, Roanoke and Sweet Briar are also competing, with separate dual-meet scoring.
Junior Alicia Finnigan was the lone Lady Flame to win multiple events on Friday, as she claimed both the 500 free and 200 butterfly. Friday night saw Liberty's fastest times this season in the 200 medley relay, 50 free, 200 IM and 100 breaststroke.
The Lady Flames got off to a great start, taking the top two spots in the 200 medley relay. Liberty's A team of Payton Keiner, Prudence Rooker, Brittany Weiss and Rachel Hoeve won in 1:43.04. It was Liberty's fastest 200 medley relay of the season.
Finnigan then opened the individual-event portion of the meet by winning the 500 free in 5:04.90. Liberty went 1-2-3-4-5 in the event. Keiner followed in second with a 5:08.97, while Ashlee Sall finished third in 5:09.23.
Liberty kept up its dominance in the 200 free. Hannah Baker clocked a winning time of 1:54.25. Chelsea Pond came in next at 1:55.46, while Elizabeth Magnusson's 1:55.97 was good for third.
In the 50 free, Hoeve edged out Campbell's Michelle Case, 23.30 to 23.51, for the win. Hoeve has won 11 straight 50 free races in dual-meet action, dating back to the start of last season. Weiss claimed third with a time of 23.70.
Rooker earned the 200 IM victory in a season-best 2:06.32, while Kiah Francis swam 2:08.59 for second and Emily Manly placed third in 2:09.03.
Weiss took the win in the 100 back, touching the wall in 55.35. Keiner swam 55.99 for second.
Ricki Lee Hodges claimed the 100 breaststroke with a 1:04.15 clocking, and teammate Rooker took second-place honors in 1:05.08.
Finnigan captured her second win of the night, swimming a season-best 2:02.09 in the 200 fly. Lindsey Cohee placed second at 2:03.25.
Liberty's A squad of Hoeve, Colleen Donlin, Weiss and Baker won the 200 free relay at the end of the session in 1:34.04.
The two-day meet will begin at 6 p.m. on Friday, with the women's 200 medley relay. Saturday's session starts at 11 a.m. with the women's 400 medley relay.
Tomorrow's action begins at 11 a.m. with the women's 400 medley relay at Liberty Natatorium.
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