Jan. 15 – BETHANY, W. Va – The Bethany College swimming & diving teams continued their strong seasons, as both the men’s and women’s teams posted victories over Frostburg State University on Wednesday. The men took home a 146-105 victory, while the women defeated the Bobcats 140-114.
On the women’s side, the Bison took first place in 11 of the 14 events en route to the 26-point victory. Alexi Pyles (Los Angeles, Calif./Granada Hills Charter) had a great day for the Bison, finishing the contest with four wins, which included two individual victories. Pyles place first in the 50 freestyle (26.14) and the 100 butterfly (1:02.51). Her time in the 100 fly was over eight seconds faster than the second-place finisher.
Pyles also swam the third leg of both the 200 medley and 200 freestyle relays that each took first place. The 200 medley team, which also consisted of Leah Weidmeyer (Summit Point, W. Va./Washington), Marina Baker (Winchester, Va./Sherando) and Taylor Jacobs (King of Prussia, Pa./Upper Merion), finished with a total time of 2:00.47, just .16 seconds away from their school-record time of 2:00.29 which they set earlier this season.
The 200 freestyle relay team also came away with a first-place finish (1:47.93), and consisted of Pyles, Jacobs, Christine Pray (Canton, Mich./Canton) and Haley Ekaitis (Pittsburgh, Pa./McKeesport).
Other multiple winners on the day included Pray, Jacobs and Baker. Pray notched first place in 1,000 free (11:26.80), the 500 free (5:40.91) and the 200 butterfly (2:28.45). Baker also finished first in three individual swims, capturing top honors in the 100 breaststroke (1:12.15), the 100 freestyle (55.47) and the 200 individual medley (2:23.73).
Along with being the anchor on both of the relay teams, Jacobs also placed first in the 200 freestyle, finishing with a time of 2:09.03.
With the victory, the Bison have officially gone a perfect 9-0 in meets against non-conference opponents this season, and now sit at 11-2 on the year.
On the men’s side, the Bison won their seventh meet of the year, taking down the Bobcats by a score of 146-105. The win clinched a winning season for the men, who are now 7-4, with just two meets to go before the PAC Championships.
Craig Starks (Milwaukee, Wisc./Rufus King International) was a vital piece in the Bison’s victory as he recorded four wins on the day. Starks took individual honors in the 50 freestyle (23.80) and the 100 butterfly (56.42) while also swimming the third leg on the first-place 200 medley (1:50.17) and 200 freestyle (1:33.56) relay teams. In the 50 freestyle, Starks really impressed, taking the race by almost six seconds.
Other members of the 200 medley relay included Grant Ashcraft (Penns Grove, N.J./Woodstown), Jake Collas (South Park, Pa./South Park) and Danny Faix (Pittsburgh, Pa./Brentwood); while the 200 freestyle relay team also included Jeremy Starr (Warren, Ohio/Warren G. Harding), Kelly Faralla (Broadview Heights, Ohio/Brecksville Broadview Heights) and Cody Hussey (Annapolis, Md./Broadneck).
To go along with his team victory in the 200 medley, Collas also added individual wins in the 100 backstroke (1:01.63) and the 200 individual medley (2:10.97). Faix swept the distance races, touching first in both the 1,000 free (11:18.30) and the 500 free (5:28.30), and Ashcraft also added an individual win, capturing the 200 backstroke (2:15.81).
The Bison will be back in action on Saturday, Jan. 18 as the teams travel to Latrobe, Pa. for a conference meet. The men will compete in a dual meet with Saint Vincent, while the women will face Saint Vincent and Chatham University in a tri-meet. All the action is slated for a 1 p.m. start.