The Central Connecticut swimming and diving team used another strong performance on Saturday night to secure second place in the 2019 Northeast Conference Championships. Led by a first place finish from junior Valentina Gomez in the 200 butterfly, the Blue Devils finished behind only Bryant University. The Bulldogs won their second straight title. Central won three straight from 2015-2017.
Central finished with an even 600 points for the championship. Bryant had 863.50, followed by the Blue Devils, and then Saint Francis University, Wagner, LIU Brooklyn, Sacred Heart, St. Francis Brooklyn and then Mount St. Mary's.
The night started with a a pair of Blue Devils finishing third and fourth in the 200 backstroke. Junior Grace Fredricks was third in 1:59.39 and senior teammate Aidan Devers finished fourth in 2:00.13. They combined for 31 points in the event. Sophomore Erin Brown was 10th and junior Keelin Kendall was 15th. Kendall had posted a ninth place finish in the 1,650 freestyle earlier in the day with a time of 17:53.00.
Freshman Jeannette King placed second overall in the 100 freestyle with a tie of 50.86, earning 17 points for the Blue Devils. Classmate Simona Visinski finished fourth in 51.06 to earn 14.5 points. Freshman Katie Czulewicz was ninth in 52.03 while senior Kaitlyn Troy was 12th in 52.57. Junior Erika Maercklein also placed 15th in 53.01 for CCSU.
Freshman Alex Lindgren placed sixth in the 200 breaststroke with a time of 2:21.21 while sophomore Katelyn Mann was eighth in 2:22.63. Freshman Mariana Espino placed ninth and junior Gracie Regan was 14th in the same event.
Gomez posted a time of 2:00.80 to win the 200 butterfly and missing the meet record by less than a second. It was almost two seconds faster than her winning time in the same event a year ago.
Central ended the meet with a second place finish in the 400 freestyle relay with a time of 3:26.42. The team consisted of King, Troy, Czulewicz and Visinski.