Schwalb breaks older sis’ Gaucho record

LONG BEACH — During the first two days of the Finis Collegiate Invitational being held at Belmont Plaza, the UCSB men’s and women’s swim teams posted a combined eight NCAA Championship consideration times, 14 first-place finishes and one school record.

Santa Barbara Ramada LimitedSunday’s highlights include Jessica Schwalb’s school-record setting performance in the 400 individual medley. Schwalb won the event in 4:17.88, which is a ‘B’ qualifying standard and breaks the school record of 4:20.43 set by her sister, Jen Schwalb in 2004.

Schwalb wasn’t the only Gaucho to reach a NCAA consideration time on the second day of the meet, Naomi Javanifard won the 100 butterfly in a NCAA consideration time of 54.43 and followed that up with a first place finish in the 100 backstroke (56.07).

Katie Stover rounded out the women’s individual first-place finishes on Sunday, winning the 200 free in 1:49.33, which is just .11 seconds off of the NCAA ‘B’ qualifying standard in the event.

In the relays, the women won both the 200 medley and 800 free. Javanifard, Anne Marie May, Miranda Schneider and Kendall Neely posted a time of 1:43.58 in the 200 medley. In the 800 free relay, Kelsey Lewis, Katie Stover, Courtney Bauer and Katie Tomkinson finished in 7:29.35.

On the men’s side, Tim Freeman won the 100 breaststroke in 55.25, a ‘B’ qualifying standard. Kevin Ferguson also achieved a NCAA consideration time with his first-place finish in the 100 backstroke (48.84).

On Saturday, the Gauchos got the meet off to a strong start with back-to-back wins in the 200 freestyle relays. The women’s ‘A’ relay team made up of May, Neely, Javanifard and Bauer took first with a time of 1:31.94, which is ‘B’ qualifying standard.

The men followed suit and the team of Chris Peterson, Kevin Kuhn, Ferguson and Ryan Hanni posted a mark of 1:20.98, another NCAA ‘B’ qualifying time.

In the 500 free, Emma Hunt and Meagan Brown qualified for the event’s finals. Hunt took fourth with a time of 5:01.88 and Brown finished behind her in fifth (5:03.64).  On the men’s side, four Gauchos made the 500 free final. Scott Vogelgesang had the top finish, coming in third with a mark of 4:35.93 (he swam the event?s preliminary heat in 4:34.60). Joe Plume took fourth (4:37.92), Ryan Garcia took sixth (4:40.12) and Brett Chamberlain was seventh (4:40.27).

The UCSB men had an even better showing in the 200 individual medley with five swimmers making the event’s final. The Gauchos swept second through sixth places in the event and Danny McClary led the pack finishing second in 1:51.00. Brandon Schilling took third (1:52.04), Freeman placed fourth (1:52.62) and Mitchell Long (1:53.33) and Evan Simoni (1:53.46) took fifth and sixth, respectively.

Schwalb was the Gauchos’ top finisher in the women?s 200 IM, placing second in 2:04.42 while Brittany Borowitz took fifth (2:06.11).

The first individual event win was by May in the 50 free. The senior touched the wall in 22.34 seconds, the second best time posted by a collegiate swimmer this season and another ‘B’ qualifying standard. Teammates Javanifard (23.36) and Neely (23.38) rounded out the top-three finishes and Bauer took sixth after finishing in 23.82.

Peterson followed May’s lead and took first in the men’s 50 free with a time of 20.34, a ‘B’ qualifying standard. Kuhn and Ferguson placed fifth and sixth with marks of 20.62 and 20.64, respectively.

Saturday’s final event was the 400 freestyle relay and the Gauchos once again swept the top finishes. Katie Stover, Emily Adamczyk, Javanifard and May picked up first for the UCSB women, finishing in 3:46.27. The team of Ferguson, Freeman, McClary and Peterson got the job done on the men?s side, posting a top finish in 3:17.40.

The Finis Collegiate Invitational will conclude on Monday at Belmont Plaza.