Denver Wins Seventh Straight Summit League Men’s and Women’s Swimming and Diving Championships

Denver earned their seventh-straight #SummitSD Championship title.
Denver earned their seventh-straight #SummitSD Championship title.

Day Four Results | Day Three Results | Day Two Results | Day One Results

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SIOUX FALLS, S.D. – For the seventh consecutive year, it's the University of Denver that stands atop the podium of the Summit League Swimming and Diving Championships presented by U.S. Air Force Special Warfare. The Pioneer men won their title with a team score of 1,082.5 while the women won with a team score of 1,147.5.

Denver senior Sammy Walker earned her second-career Summit League diving title on Saturday. In her six, 3-meter dives Walker earned a champioship record combined score of 320.15. Rounding out the top three were South Dakota's Haley Pederson (291.35) and Denver's Kylie Katsuyoshi.

In the 100-yard IM, Denver picked up a title on the women's side when senior Kylie Cronin won the event for the third-straight year with a time of 56.79. She was joined on the podium by South Dakota State's Ashley Theobald and South Dakota's Isabel Fairbanks. On the men's side, it was South Dakota sophomore Jacob Leichner who won the crown with a time of 50.77, as he won the only non-Denver student-athlete to win a title. He was joined on the podium by teammate Elbert Chuang (51.72) and South Dakota State's Gavin Wheeler (51.92).

In the championships' longest race, the 1,650-yard freestyle, Denver senior Andi Johnston took the women's event for the second-straight season with the fastest time of 16:53.51. On the men's side, it was freshman Riley Babson who won the event with the fastest time of 15:28.91, while teammate Jesse Haraden finished just .01 seconds behind Babson.

Denver took home both titles in the 200-yard backstroke on Saturday. On the women's side, it was Natalie Arky who swam the event in a time of 1:55.55 to win the event. She was joined on the podium by teammates Sofia Nosack and Olivia Schmid. On the men's side, Patrick Groters won the event with his time of 1:42.20. He was joined on the podium by teammate Neil Wachtler and Western Illinois' Brennan Bladel.

In the women's 100-yard freestyle, Denver earned a clean sweep of the podium. Aysia Leckie took home her second-straight crown with a time 50.57 and was joined on the podium by Sarah Lingen and Eri Remington. On the men's side, Denver's Cameron Auchinachie set a new Summit League meet record with a time of 42.63, breaking his previous record time of 42.65 he set at last year's championship. He was joined on the podium by teammates Sid Farber and Hugo Sykes.

In the women's 200-yard breaststroke, it was Denver that the two of the top three spots. Junior Charlotte Simon took home her second-straight title with a time of 2:15.65. She was joined on the podium by teammate Emily Vandenberg and South Dakota State's Alyssa Eckstein. In the men's event, it was Adriel Sanes who walked away with his second-straight the Summit League title after posting a championship record-time of 1:55.70. He was joined on the podium by teammates Cy Jager and Harrison Fudge.

In the women's 200-yard butterfly Denver took two of the three podium spots. Josie Valette won the event with a championship record-breaking time of 1:57.79. She was joined on the podium by teammate Kylie Cronin and South Dakota's Maddie Lavin. On the men's side, Trent Panzera of Denver won the 200 butterfly with a time of 1:49.74. He was joined on the podium by teammate Graham Walker and Western Illinois' Garrett Kemp.

In the 400-yard freestyle relay, Denver took the top spot in both the women's and men's events. On the women's side, the Pioneers took the top spot with a time of 3:22.66. Their winning team consisted of Josie Valette, Aysia Leckie, Eri Remington, and Sarah Lingen. The men's team won with a time of 2:55.83 and their winning team consisted of Cameron Auchinachie, Sid Farber, Hugo Sykes, and Adriel Sanes.

Championship Records and NCAA Qualifying Marks
• Denver's Walker (320.15) and South Dakota's Pederson (291.35) both earned NCAA Zone Diving qualifying marks in the 3-meter dive
• Denver's Cameron Auchinachie set a new Summit League meet record in the men's 100-yard freestyle with a time of 42.65. He broke the record of 42.78 which was set in 2018 by teammate Sid Farber
• NCAA Zone Diving: Walker, Denver 3-meter; Pederson, USD 3-meter
• Denver women B cut times: Cronin 200 fly, Arky 200 back, Valette 200 fly, Cronon 200 fly
• Denver men B cut times: Farber 100 free, Sanes 200 breast, Groters 200 back, Auchinachie 100 free
• The University of Denver women broke a Summit League record of highest team point total with 1,183 points. The previous high was Oakland in 2001 who scored 1,093 points as part of the Mid-Continent Conference

Final Team Standings
Men
1. Denver – 1,082.50
2. South Dakota – 706.50
3. South Dakota State – 645.50
4. Eastern Illinois –395
5. Western Illinois –278.50
6. Valparaiso –244

Women
1. Denver – 1,147.50
2. South Dakota – 656.50
3. South Dakota State – 603.50
4. Omaha – 581
5. Eastern Illinois – 233
6. Western Illinois – 176.50

Champions
Swimming
Women's 100 Yard IM – Kylie Cronin, Denver (56.79)
Men's 100 Yard IM – Jacob Leichner, South Dakota (51.72)
Women's 1,650 Yard Freestyle – Andi Johnston, Denver (16:53.51)
Men's 1,650 Yard Freestyle – Riley Babson, Denver (15:28.91)
Women's 200 Yard Backstroke – Natalie Arky, Denver (1:55.55)
Men's 200 Yard Backstroke – Patrick Groters, Denver (1:42.20)
Women's 100 Yard Freestyle – Aysia Leckie, Denver (50.57)
Men's 100 Yard Freestyle – Cameron Auchinachie, Denver (42.63) *
Women's 200 Yard Breaststroke – Charlotte Simon, Denver (2:15.65)
Men's 200 Yard Breaststroke – Trent Panzera, Denver (1:49.74)
Women's 200 Yard Butterfly – Josie Valette, Denver (1:57.79)
Men's 200 Yard Butterfly – Trent Panzera, Denver (1:49.74)

Relays
Women's 400 Yard Freestyle Relay – Denver, (3:22.66)
Men's 400 Yard Freestyle Relay – Denver, (2:55.83)

Diving
Women's 3-meter – Sammy Walker, Denver (320.15) *
*Summit League Championship meet record

Awards
Men
Championship Swimming MVP – Adriel Sanes, Denver
Championship Diving MVP – Mitch Raihle, South Dakota State
Newcomer of the Championship – Riley Babson, Denver
Diving Coach of the Year – Elyse Brouillette, South Dakota State
Swimming Coach of the Year – Alicia Hicken-Franklin, Denver

Women
Championship Swimming MVP – Josie Valette, Denver
Championship Diving MVP – Sammy Walker, Denver
Newcomer of the Championship – Natalie Arky, Denver
Diving Coach of the Year – Aaron D'Addario, Denver
Swimming Coach of the Year – Alicia Hicken-Franklin, Denver

Up Next
Qualifying divers will travel to the NCAA Zone Diving Championships which will take place March 9-11 at the West Virginia University (Zone A), University of Georgia (Zone B), March 12-14 at the University of Kentucky (Zone C), SMU (Zone D) and in Federal Way, Wash., hosted by the University of Utah for Zone E. Swimmers await NCAA selections to the 2020 NCAA Division I Men's and Women's Swimming Championships. The Men's Championships will be held in Indianapolis, Ind., at IUPUI and the Women's Championship will be held in Athens, Ga., at the University of Georgia. The women's championship will be March 18-21 with the men's championship on March 25-28.

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