Vikings’ Winning Form Stopped on the Road

Vikings’ Winning Form Stopped on the Road

CLEVELAND, Ohio – The Cleveland State University men's and women's swimming & diving teams both came up short to Oakland Saturday afternoon inside the Oakland Aquatic Center.

CSU was off to a combined 9-1 start in the calendar year, all against Horizon League foes, but neither side could keep up with the Golden Grizzlies Saturday. The CSU women fell, 179.5-120.5 and the men dropped a 194-106 decision.

Junior Molly McNamara and sophomore Gabriella Marinelli led the way for the Viking women, as the former won three individual events and the latter claimed two.

McNamara destroyed the field in her first individual swim of the day. She won the 200 butterfly by nearly 10 seconds, finishing in 2:02.42. She then touched the wall first the 100 fly in 55.59 seconds, winning by over a second, while classmate Cassandra Oltman was fourth in 59.57.

McNamara's final individual swim was the best event of the day for the CSU women as they swept the top four spots. She won the 200 IM in 2:07.96 while junior Claudia Zido and freshmen Alana Cartwright and Shaw Barney took spots two through four (2:10.59, 2:12.11, 2:12.97).

McNamara also swam the third leg on CSU's runner-up 200 medley relay squad. Oltman led off and was followed by freshman Gracyn McQueary while senior Jamie VanDewerker anchored the group, which finished in 1:44.19.

Marinelli won with a magnificent come-from-behind effort in her first swim of the day, the 200 freestyle. She trailed by .53 seconds with just 50 yards left but rallied furiously to finish first in 1:54.11. Freshman Irena Weclawiak and sophomore Meghan Bobick were fourth and fifth in the field of 11 in 1:56.12 and 1:56.46, respectively.

Marinelli also posted a comeback win in her next event, albeit one where she had time to do so in the 500 free. She pulled ahead near the middle of the race and won in 5:09.11.

Freshman Lexie Kostelnik was the runner-up for CSU in the 500 in 5:10.59. She also took second in the 1650 in 17:41.47.

CSU took four of the top five spots in the 100 backstroke with Cartwright leading the way. She took second in 58.40 seconds, junior Ashleigh Bennett was third (58.45), sophomore Chuchu Yang was fourth (59.38) and Oltman was fifth (59.71). Yang led the way for CSU in the 200 back, taking third in 2:07.81, while junior Michaela Bargardi was fourth in 2:09.38.

Senior Tobie Zeller and freshman Libby Smith took second and third, respectively, in the 100 breaststroke in 1:06.13 and 1:06.70. Smith was also second in the 200 (2:25.60) while junior Morgan Massie was fourth (2:28.32).

VanDewerker took second in the 50 freestyle (24.23) and was CSU's second-highest finisher in the 100 free behind Zido, who finished in 53.57 seconds.

Freshman Erica Henrichsen nearly won 3-meter diving, finishing less than a point out of first. She scored 243.22 in 3-meter and was third in 1-meter with 204.60 points.

Over on the men's side, sophomore DJ Arslanian joined Marinelli and McNamara in winning multiple events, as she swept the butterfly discipline.

Arslanian won the 200 by almost 1.5 seconds, taking first in 1:52.03. His race in the 100 was one of the closest of the day as he edged past his Oakland foe by a whisker, winning in 49.61 seconds. Senior Grant Wethington was fourth in the 100 (51.16) and fifth in the 200 (1:57.69).

Arslanian also swam on both of CSU's top-finishing relays. In the 200 medley relay, junior Jason van der Touw led off and was followed by classmate Jared Stergar, Arslanian and junior Sean Mulvin. The quartet finished second in 1:31.45.

In the 400 freestyle relay, Mulvin, van der Touw and Arslanian were joined by sophomore Jack MacDonald as the group took second in 3:03.31.

Van der Touw was CSU's top finisher in both the 200 and 500 freestyle. He was the runner-up in the 200 in 1:39.05, finishing less than .10 seconds out of first. He then took third in the 500 in 4:40.40 while freshman Lee Moffett was fourth (4:48.54).

Moffett led CSU to spots two, three and four in the 1650 freestyle. He finished second in the mile in 16:30.99 while fellow rookies Alec Bowie (16:36.43) and David Bates (16:40.17) were third and fourth.

Another pair of rookies, Timothy Kubacki and Dominik Niedzialek, both finished among the top three in both backstroke events. Niedzialek was runner-up in the 100 (50.09) as Kubacki took third (51.76). The duo flipped positions in the 200 as Kubacki finished in 1:52.26 and Niedzialek touched the wall in 1:52.93.

Kubacki and Niedzialek were also CSU's top finishers in the 200 IM as they took third and fourth, respectively, in 1:55.74 and 1:56.85.

Sophomore Tyler Stevenson was among the top four in both breaststroke events. He took second in the 200 in 2:06.51 while Stergar was fourth (2:10.11) and junior Addison Kaufmann was fifth (2:12.73). In the 100, Stergar was third (57.48) while Stevenson took fourth (57.52).

MacDonald was fourth in the 50 freestyle in 21.44 seconds while Mulvin was CSU's top finisher in the 100 (47.03).

Freshman Matt Akers finished as the runner-up in both diving events for CSU. He scored 300.60 points in 3-meter and 286.65 in the 1-meter. His 3-meter score was his highest in the past four meets. Junior Curtis Roden took third in 1-meter with 264.90 points.

The CSU women's program will be right back in action next weekend with a pair of road duals on back-to-back days while the men's team will take the weekend off from competition.