Jackrabbits deliver with second place finishes at Summit League finale

John Green

In a championship meet, the cream is supposed to rise to the top. True to style, the SDSU swim team had a tremendous performance at the Summit League Championships, with both the men and women claiming second-place finishes in the team standings.

“We swam exceptionally well,” head coach Brad Erickson said. “We started out strong on Wednesday, and our performance just built upon itself after that.”

The Jacks had several outstanding individual times recorded, including sophomore Andrea Budahl’s 1650-yard freestyle race. Budahl’s swam 16:58.18, setting the school record. Close behind Budahl were freshman Samantha Fossum and sophomore Emma Gaulke- Janowski, giving the Jackrabbits third through fifth place in that event.

Not to be outdone, senior Morgan McLain set a school record of her own in the 200- yard backstroke with a time of 2:01.54. That time gave McLain a second-place finish, which she accompanied with two runner-up performances in the 200-yard IM and the 400-yard freestyle relay. McLain was honored as the Women’s Newcomer of the Championship.

On the men’s side, among an excess of outstanding performances, sophomore Chris Schreier stood out as he defended his title in the 200-yard butterfly. Schreier recorded a time of 1:48.72, an improvement over his previous mark of 1:49.06. In the midst of defending his title, Schreier also set the school record, adding yet another record-setting time to the Jackrabbit effort over the weekend.

“It was just mind-blowing,” Erickson said. “We knew if we swam well we would have a good chance at taking second. And we did just that.”

Erickson was honored as the Summit League men’s co-coach of the year, alongside Oakland University’s Pete Hovland.

Although the season is now over for most of the athletes on the team, two of the SDSU divers will still be in the pool for the next two weeks. Sophomores Clark Kocourek and Connor Florand have both qualified for the NCAA Zone meet. The Zone meet will be held March 8 through March 10 in Iowa City, Iowa.

For now, the SDSU swim team is changing gears as they will have to replace seniors. The recruiting process will begin to heat up, and new athletes will join the ranks. The Jackrabbits had a good season, and they hope to match or exceed their efforts in the next upcoming season.

“Things are looking pretty good for us,” Erickson said. “When you can finish the season like we did, it makes things that much easier when it’s time to recruit in April.”