ANNAPOLIS, Md. – The Lehigh swimming and diving teams opened up action at the Patriot League Championships with strong showings Thursday at Lejeune Hall in Annapolis, Md. Both Mountain Hawks set a school record in a relay event in Thursday evening’s finals. After one day of competition, Lehigh’s men are in third place with 130 points, while the women are sixth with 85.
The Mountain Hawk men opened up Thursday night’s finals session in style setting a school record in the first event, the 200 free relay. Sophomore Demetri Karedis, junior Frank Cuzzola, freshman Martin Kendig and sophomore Chris Hoke finished second in the event with a record-setting time of 1:21.05. The previous record was set back in 2003.
Hoke also led the charge for the sprinters in the 50 free, finishing second overall with a time of 20.47 seconds. Cuzzola posted a time of 20.60 seconds to finish fifth, while Karedis finished in sixth place, one-hundredth of a second behind Cuzzola.
Lehigh placed three swimmers in the B final of the 200 yard individual medley, with junior Alex Aboud leading the way with a tenth place finish in 1:52.95. Senior Kevin Shoemaker was 12th overall with a time of 1:53.38, while freshman Jack Lorentzen posted a time of 1:54.38 to finish 15th overall.
Senior Chris Toth led Lehigh in the 500 free, finishing 11th overall with a time of 4:34.66. Freshman Danny Bennett finished 13th with a time of 4:36.32.
Lehigh’s 400 medley relay team took fifth as Kendig, Aboud, Shoemaker and Karedis clocked in at 3:26.61.
Senior Connor Styles qualified for the finals in the one meter diving competition, posting a score of 302.40, good for fourth place. Freshman Dan Bateman and sophomore Michael Harshman settled for 11th and 14th respectively.
The Mountain Hawks scored 130 points on day one to sit third behind defending champion Navy (275) and Bucknell (167.5).
On the women’s side the Mountain Hawks’ 400 yard medley relay team capped the day by setting a school record, while freshman Alissa Leung won the B final in the 200 yard IM to lead Lehigh.
Leung delivered Lehigh’s best individual effort, winning the consolation final in the 200 IM to claim ninth place overall with a time of 2:07.95. Sophomore Meredith Bayer finished four spots behind Leung with a time of 2:09.13.
In addition to her individual success, Leung swam the leadoff leg of the 400 medley relay team as the Long Island native teamed with juniors Emily DiDonato and Brooke Smalley and senior Paola Simon to finish fourth overall with a time of 3:52.46. The previous record was set at the 2007 championships by Julie Mitchell, Melanie Rolish, Julie Sicherman and Betsy Balaguer.
Simon reached the consolation final in the 50 free, finishing 15th overall with a time of 24.57 seconds, while senior Alyssa Siano finished 16th in the 500 free with a finals time of 5:14.02.
On the diving boards sophomore Mercy Du and junior Daniela Sonderegger failed to qualify for the finals in the three meter, settling for 11th and 12th place respectively.
In the opening event of Thursday night’s finals, Simon teamed with sophomore Steph Yaszemski, senior Lauren Armstrong and freshman Taylor Wise took seventh place with a time of 1:38.01.
Host Navy is out to a slight 259-212 lead over defending champion Colgate in the team race. The Mountain Hawks sit in sixth place with 85 points, one behind fifth place American.
The Patriot League Championships continue Friday from Lejeune Hall in Annapolis, Md. Preliminaries are set for a 10:30 a.m. start with finals set to begin at 6 p.m.
Men’s Team Scores
1. Navy, 275
2. Bucknell, 167.5
3. LEHIGH, 130
4. Army, 100.5
5. Colgate, 80
6. American, 61
7. Lafayette, 55
8. Holy Cross, 46
Women’s Team Scores
1. Navy, 259
2. Colgate, 212
3. Bucknell, 185
4. Army, 154
5. American, 86
6. LEHIGH, 85
7. Lafayette, 66
8. Holy Cross, 45