Jan. 26, 2008
Contact: Gene Natale, Jr.
CLEVELAND, Ohio - Cleveland State scored an impressive 132-95 victory over Niagara University Saturday at Busbey Natatorium in front of a partisan home crowd for the team's annual Alumni Day.
The women won 10 of 11 swimming events in the meet, with nearly all team members making important contributions.
"It was just a great team victory for the Lady Vikes," head coach Wally Morton said, "What I liked best about today is how the women support each other and cheer each other on."
The women set the tone for the day early in the meet as the 200 medley relay team of Sandra Bunker, Katie Bellew, Alex Bagi, and Lesley Jones swam to a near season best time of 1:55.38 while capturing victory in the event.
Jones led the team individually as she scored wins in both the 50 yard (25.02) and 100 yard (54.40) freestyle, as well as swimming on the winning 200 medley team. Also standing out were Kristine Bunker and Katie Bellew, who each had a hand in three victories along with Jones.
Bunker put forth a nice effort in winning the 400 IM (4:53.69) and also swam on the winning 200 medley and 200 free relay teams. Bellew won both the 100 butterfly (1:00.98) and 100 breaststroke (1:09.32), and also swam on the winning 200 medley relay.
"What I like best about the women is how they have been to every one of the practices," Morton said, "They are always on time, the first to get to practice and the first to get into the water. If we continue to work on the winning pattern we will be successful this season."
Trisha Simon showed grit as she gutted it out for her team in the 1-meter dive despite an injured foot, putting forth a second place effort in the event with a score of 122.03. Though not her best score, the points from the event were important to help the team win.
"What I saw today was a total team effort, from how we did in winning the relays to Trish diving hurt, and I am very proud of all of them," Morton said.
Three other women scored individual event wins for the team, including Erin Green (1,650 yd free, 18:12.15), Frances Carrion (500 yd free, 5:24.75), and Sandra Bunker (100 yd backstroke, 1:05.07). The winning 200 medley relay team (1:55.38) included Jones and Kristine Bunker as well as Alex Bagi and Sandra Bunker, while the winning 200 free relay team (1:45.57) included Bagi, Kristina Nagy, Kristine Bunker and Diana Mruk.
Nearly all of the events that were won by the Vikings also included third place finishes by a Viking swimmer, adding important points to the team's total. Of the third place finishes the team put forth on the day, Kristina Nagy's had to have been the most impressive, as her time in the 50 free (25.89) was easily the fastest she had ever swam in the event.
The Vikings return to action next weekend on Saturday, February 2 at 12:00 p.m. as the team hosts both UIC as well as Youngstown State. At the meet, Coach Morton will take time to honor the seniors for their contributions to the team for the last four years.