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NMU swimmers have successful weekend

By Journal Sports Staff

GRAND RAPIDS — The Northern Michigan University swimming and diving teams finished off a successful weekend with some strong performances at the Calvin College Invitational Saturday.

The Northern men won the meet, finishing with 2,042 points, while the women took second in their meet with 1,610 points. The Wildcats were edged out by Grand Valley State (1,662 points) for the title.

NMU won three swimming events on the men’s side and one diving event. Grantas Dapkus took the 500-yard freestyle title with a time of 4:30.47, while Arnoldo Herrera won the 200 breaststroke (2:01.34) and Lajos Budai won the 100 free (44.75). Brimley native Kyle Flickinger took home both the 1-meter and 3-meter diving titles.

Even though they didn’t win the meet, the Northern women still had a big day. The 400 freestyle relay team of Rachel Helm, Maggie Vaitkus, Regan Kilburn and Lena Soulas set a new school and pool record in the preliminaries with a time of 3:26.17. With that time, the foursome qualified for the NCAA Championships and later went on to win the event. The 200 medley relay team (Helm, Kilburn, Vaitkus, Maddy Irelan) also qualified for the NCAAs with a time of 1:43.41 and won the event as well.

Individually, Helm won both the 200 backstroke (1:57.33) and the 200 individual medley (2:03.30), while Soulas took first in the 100 free (50.48). Diver Mary Grossman rounded out NMU’s wins by finishing on top in the 3-meter competition.

Both teams will be competing in Florida over the holidays and will return home Jan. 12 when they host Division I opponent Wisconsin-Green Bay at the PEIF.

Information compiled by Journal Sports Writer Ryan Stieg. His email address is rstieg@miningjournal.net.

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