INDIANAPOLIS – In the final race of her college career, senior Haley DeGrace became just the third Florida Southern women's swimmer to earn an All-American award in a breaststroke event as the Moccasins wrapped up the 2019 NCAA Division II National Swimming & Diving Championships.
HOW IT HAPPENED
- DeGrace was the last of three Moccasins to swim Saturday after earning a spot in the consolation finals of the 200-breast. She finished 16th overall in a time of 2:19.52, concluding a career that saw her set school records in both the 100 and 200, and become the first swimmer in team history to qualify for the national finals in both distances all four years. She joined Kelsey Gouge (100 in 2013) and Rae-Lynn Sheffield (100 and 200 in 2011, and the 200 in 2012) as the only Florida Southern women's swimmers to be a First Team All-American or honor honorable mention All-American as a breaststroke swimmer. Winning the 200-breast in 2:09.67 was junior Bailee Nunn of Drury, who also won the 100-breast on Friday and the 200-IM on Wednesday.
- Senior Katie Moore swam her final event for the Moccasins in the 1650-freestyle and turned in a time of 17:34.63, but was not among the 16 scoring individuals. Winning the 1,650 was West Chester junior Georgia Wright, who also won the 1,000 and 500 during the meet.
- Florida Southern had one swimmer in the 100-freestyle with Malin Wallen turning in a time of 53.90 seconds during prelims but not advancing to the finals. 100-free was won by Queens (NC) junior Polina Lapshina, who swept the four individual events in which she participated (50-free, 100-fly, 100-back, and 100-free). Her time of 48.16 seconds in the 100-free was a new NCAA Division II record.
- The Moccasins did not compete in the 200-backstroke or 400-freestyle relay Saturday. Freshman Bobbi Gicahrd of Queens won the 200-back, and Queens completed a relay sweep by taking the 400-free in a Division II record time of 3:18.04 and finishing more than three seconds ahead of second-place Tampa. With Lapshina on three of those relay teams, it gave the Queens junior a total of seven gold medals in the meet.
INSIDE THE NUMBERS:
- Queens won its fifth straight Division II national championship with 707½ points, and Drury was second with 345. The Royals' winning margin was the largest in D-II championship history, with the first national meet held in 1982. The previous record margin was 272 points by Truman over Drury in 2003. West Chester remained third with 249 points, and Nova Southeastern held on to the fourth position with 213½. Tampa was able to jump Cal-San Diego for fifth place with 207½ points, just 1½ more than the Tritons, a margin the Spartans made up in the 400-freestyle relay at the end of the meet. Florida Southern finished 30th out of 45 scoring teams.