Liberty wraps up its fall swimming and diving schedule this week, traveling to Christiansburg, Va., for the Virginia Tech Invitational, held Thursday through Saturday at Christiansburg Aquatic Center.
The Lady Flames (6-2, 1-0 CCSA) will appear at the Virginia Tech Invitational for the third year in a row. Also, Liberty makes its second trip to the Christiansburg Aquatic Center this season, having gone 2-2 at the Virginia Tech Swimming & Diving Challenge on Oct. 18.
This week's meet will follow a championship format, similar to the program that will be followed at the 2015 CCSA Swimming & Diving Championships and 2015 NCAA Championships. The three-day program will consist of two sessions each day, with preliminary heats in the morning and evening finals. Unlike at the conference and national meets, all athletes present are eligible to score points.
How to Follow the Lady Flames Fans unable to attend the Virginia Tech Invitational can follow the action through live timing, provided by Virginia Tech.
Liberty will compete against a pair of SEC programs, Alabama and South Carolina, along with Virginia Tech of the ACC, the BIG EAST's Villanova, Ohio of the MAC and William & Mary of the Colonial Athletic Association. Three of Liberty's opponents, Alabama (21st), Virginia Tech (29th) and South Carolina (34th) appear in the latest CollegeSwimming.com Power Rankings.
The Lady Flames have gone 6-2 so far in dual-meet action this season, including 1-0 in CCSA competition. Liberty posted a win over a Pac-12 team for the first time in program history, downing Oregon State in Corvallis, Ore., on Oct. 10. The Lady Flames were ranked No. 47 in the first CollegeSwimming.com Power Rankings this season, marking the third year in a row that the Lady Flames have appeared in the season's first national rankings.
In its last meet, on Oct. 31, Liberty posted a resounding 189-105 win over four-time defending Atlantic 10 champion Richmond at the LaHaye Aquatic Center. The Lady Flames won 13 out of 14 individual events, and lowered four pool records on the evening. Prior to the meet, Liberty honored its 2013-14 CCSA Championship team with a ring ceremony.
Junior Kendall Hough took home three event victories against Richmond, winning the 100 back, 50 free and 100 free. She was named the CCSA Swimmer of the Week on Oct. 14. She ranks second in the CCSA in both the 50 (23.40) and 100 free (51.02), while her 100 back time 56.34 ranks third.
Sophomore Heather McCorkel won both the 200 and 500 free versus the Spiders on Oct. 31, including a pool-record 1:52.32 in the 200 freestyle. She holds the top CCSA 200 free time this season, at 1:50.22, while sitting in second for 500 free, at 5:01.90. McCorkel is Liberty's 200 and 500 free record holder.
Freshman Prudence Rooker was named CCSA Swimmer of the Week on Nov. 4. She earned victory in the 200 individual medley in a pool-record 2:07.27 against Richmond, while also winning the 100 breaststroke in 1:05.58. Her 200 IM time of 2:07.27 is the second fastest by a CCSA swimmer in the 2014-15 campaign.
Junior Hannah Wakeley was victorious in the 1000 free and 200 fly on Oct. 31 against Richmond. She won the 1000 free in a pool-best time of 10:26.18. Wakeley ranks fourth in CCSA standings in both the 1000 free and 200 fly.
Senior Emily Duff won the 200 back versus Richmond. She holds the second-best 200 back (2:01.23) time in the CCSA this year, while ranking third in the 400 individual medley (4:29.85) and fourth in the 100 back (56.74).
Sophomore Morgan Noonan is ranked third in the CCSA with a 200 breaststroke time of 2:21.14. She swam 2:22.85 to win the 200 breaststroke in the Richmond meet.
Relays have been a source of strength for the Lady Flames this year, as they hold the second-fastest marks in the conference in the 200 free relay (1:34.95), 400 free relay (3:28.40) and 200 medley relay (1:45.21).
Liberty holds the fastest time in the conference in the following event this season: 200 free – Heather McCorkel (1:50.22) Current Lady Flames Holding Program Records 200 free – Heather McCorkel (1:49.07 – 2/21/14) 500 free – Heather McCorkel (4:48.87 – 2/20/14) 1000 free – Kristin VanDeventer (10:11.74 – 2/22/14) 1650 free – Kristin VanDeventer (16:55.28 – 2/22/14) 50 back – Kendall Hough (25.26 – L – 2/19/14) 200 back – Emily Duff (1:57.52 – 2/22/14) 400 IM – Emily Duff (4:20.89 – 2/21/14)
Following their time in Christiansburg, the Lady Flames will return home. Liberty will send select student-athletes to compete in the USA Swimming AT&T Winter National Championships, held Dec. 3-6 in Greensboro, N.C.
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