Blacksburg, Va. - On the final day of competition in the Virginia Tech Invite, the UConn women’s swimming and diving team finished the event in 5th place with 320 points. The 10-team field was topped by the host school, Virginia Tech who scored 1,121 points over the three-day competition.
Senior Christine Pedersen (Vinterbro, Norway) nearly reached a NCAA B qualifying time in the 200-yard backstroke. Pedersen touched the wall in 2:00.13, placing 7th overall in the A-Final, the senior needed a 1:59.19 in order to qualify. Annika Grewal secured a spot in the C-final of the event and ended up taking 17th place, swimming in 2:02.20.
Emma Smith was the only other Husky swimmer to reach an A-Final on Saturday, doing so in the 1650-yard freestyle. She competed to a sixth place finish, recording a time of 16:52.35. Freshmen Sona Pinela impressed in the event, notching a 14th place time at 17:26.42.
UConn littered the finals with fours swimmers in the 100-yard freestyle. In freestyle, Madeline Blair represented the Huskies in the B-final, Nabbing 16th place with a time of 52.77. Co-captain Margot Manning (Frederick, Md.), Jackie Van Lew and Eliza Manning all participated in the C-final. Margot Manning snagged 17th, Van Lew 21st and Eliza Manning 22nd.
The 200-yard butterfly featured three Huskies in the finals. Pinela reached the B-Final, taking 15th place with a time of 2:07.39. Behind her was Sophie Nothnagle, in 17th, in the C-Final with Emily Parillo, who finished in 24th (2:12.14).
Finally, to wrap up the competition the Huskies ended on a high note, putting two teams inside the top-10 of the 400-yard freestyle relay. The Manning sisters, Blair and Van Lew swam to a seventh place finish with a time of 3:27.61. The team of Deanna Parsons, Emma Smith, Holly Parker and Madeleine Hoopes took ninth place (3:29.09).
We had a solid team meet this weekend," said head coach Bob Goldberg. "Coaches Barletta and Franz did a great job preparing the team. Christine Pedersen and Margot Manning had great weekends and it was great to have Sophie Nothnagle back. Now we shift our focus to preparing for a tough meet against Boston University and Yale."
The squad will now take a week off from competition and prepare for a Saturday, Dec. 3rd meet with Yale and Boston University at the Wolff-Zackin Natatorium in Storrs, Conn.