FAIRMONT – Behind a pair of runner-up spots by Cameron Zuliani and a pair of thirds by two relay teams, the Buckhannon-Upshur Lady Bucs took third place in the Big 10 Conference Championships this past Saturday at Fairmont State College.
Zuliani took runner-up honors in the 50-yard freestyle with a time of 26.45 and the 100-yard butterfly with a clocking of 1:03.66.
“I thought we had a very impressive meet this weekend at the Big 10 Conference championships,” remarked Buckhannon-Upshur head coach Will Squires. “Our swimmers have a lot to be proud of. Even though the girls are a relatively small team in comparison, they swam extremely well and earned a lot of points.”
The Lady Bucs wound up with 132 points.
Bridgeport won the 11-team girl’s title with 312 while Fairmont Senior was second with 162.5.
Elkins trailed the Lady Bucs with 110 points while Robert C. Byrd was fifth with 65.5.
Helping the Lady Bucs to their finish were the results of the 200-yard freestyle relay and 200-yard medley relay squads.
Johnna Smith, Jenny Williams, McKenzie Reynolds and Zuliani made up the freestyle relay foursome and finished third with a time of 1:55.23 while Emma Reger, Williams, Merrody Malone and Zuliani swam the medley relay and took third with a time of 2;11.43.
Reger and Williams both earned a pair of individual fourths.
Reger had a time of 1:15.74 in the 100-yard backstroke while Williams had a time of 2:41.09 in the 200-yard IM.
Malone earned an individual sixth in the 200-yard freestyle with a time of 2:29.81.
McKenzie Reynolds had a pair of top-seven finishes as she took sixth in the 100-yard freestyle (1:06.07) and a seventh in the 50-yard freestyle (29.23).
The two other top 10 individual finishes went to Smith who placed seventh in the 100-yard free style (1:06.45) and Reger who took ninth in the 200-yard freestyle (2:33.98).
Squires was impressed with the effort of Smith and Williams in the championships.
“Johnna Smith has showed tenacity this season because she has been moved around to a lot of different events in order to find what best suits her and she shows up each meet, swims her absolute hardest, even while swimming a stroke she doesn't feel the strongest in,” he remarked. “Jenny Williams has been working hard to perfect her 200 IM and 100 breaststroke and you can see the results of her hard work paying off with a fourth and fifth.”
The 400-yard freestyle relay unit of Iris Kolenich, Abby Loudin, Reger and Malone took sixth with a time of 4:55.86.
“We had some great results in our relays, again with a small team every relay counts,” Squires stated. “We have been lucky that our relays provide some good competition against the bigger schools and allow us to score well at these big invitationals.”
The Lady Bucs will now rest up and host regionals Saturday at West Virginia Wesleyan College at noon.
“We are very excited for this weekend's regional competition,” Squires concluded. “We look for even more improvement as we hope to end our season with a great regional meet and hopefully taking a good few to the state meet,”
1. Bridgeport 312; 2. Fairmont Senior 162.5; 3. Buckhannon-Upshur 132; 4. Elkins 110; 5. Robert C. Byrd 65.5; 6. East Fairmont 54; 7. Grafton 44; 8. Philp Barbour 36; 9. North Marion 11; 10. Lincoln 8; 11. Liberty 2.
LADY BUC RESULTS
50-yard freestyle – Cameron Zuliani (2nd, 26.45), McKenzie Reynolds (7th, 29.23), Johnna Smith (12th, 30.06).
100-yard backstroke – Emma Reger (4th, 1:15.74), Abby Loudin (13th, 1:27.29).
100-yard breaststroke – Jenny Williams (5th, 1:20.31),
100-yard butterfly – Cameron Zuliani (2nd, 1:03.66), Merrody Malone (6th, 1:14.70),
100-yard freestyle – McKenzie Reynolds (6th, 1:06.07), Johnna Smith (7th, 1:06.45), Iris Kolenich (17th, 1:16.27), Abby Loudin (18th, 1:16.43).
200-yard freestyle – Merrody Malone (6th, 2:29.81), Emma Reger (9th, 2:33.98).
200-yard IM – Jenny Williams (4th, 2:41.09).
200-yard freestyle relay – Johnna Smith, Jenny Williams, McKenzie Reynolds, Cameron Zuliani (3rd, 1:55.23).
200-yard medley relay – Emma Reger, Jenny Williams, Merrody Malone, Cameron Zuliani (3rd, 2:11.43).
400-yard freestyle relay – Iris Kolenich, Abby Loudin, Emma Reger, Merrody Malone (6th, 4:55.86).