Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

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October 4, 2022

Texas Women’s Swim, Dive takes third place at NCAA Championships

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Courtesy of Texas Athletics

This weekend at the NCAA Women’s Swimming and Diving Championships, every single point counted.

The four-day event, hosted by the University of North Carolina at the Greensboro Aquatic Center, saw many Longhorns step up. Competitors such as Texas sophomore Kelly Pash, who won third place and captured 16 points for the Longhorns in the 200-yard freestyle, pushed the team ahead and allowed Texas to capture third place. 

Even setbacks such as a tornado warning could not stop the Texas women’s swim and dive team from coming back with some major titles and wins. The performance was the first top-three finish for the Longhorns since 2001. 

The Longhorn quartet of Pash, senior Evie Pfeifer, sophomore Kyla Leibel and junior Julia Cook started the meet off strong, earning fourth place in the 800-yard freestyle relay. Pash finished her leg with a time of 1:43.07, coming only 0.37 of a second behind her school record. 

Pfeifer continued to prove herself in every event she competed in. In the 500-yard freestyle, she finished in second place behind Virginia senior Paige Madden. She smashed the school record with a time of 4:35.02. 

On the third day, Pfeifer claimed a fifth place finish in the 400-yard individual medley with a time of 4:05.41. The final night, Pfeifer grabbed yet another All-American title and school record in the 1650 freestyle with a time of 15:46.41. 

Thursday night was finished with a third-place win in the 400-yard medley with Texas swimmers Cook, Pash, freshman Anna Elendt and freshman Olivia Bray. The relay originally finished in fourth place, but California was disqualified for an early take off in the final leg. This resulted in Texas moving up in final standing. 

Newer teammates, such as freshman Emma Sticklen, experienced their first All-American finish of their college career. Sticklen took 7th in the 200-yard fly at 1:54.09. 

Texas continued to rack up points and All-American titles as Bray finished second in the 200-yard fly and Pash took home fourth in the 200-yard fly.

On the final day of the championship, the Longhorns snagged multiple honorable mention All-American titles. This included Cook taking 10th in the 200-yard backstroke and Elendt placing ninth in the 200-yard breaststroke. 

On the diving side, all eyes were on junior Paola Pineda, who placed fifth on the 1-meter springboard with a six-round score of 329.00. Her efforts on this singular event added 14 points to UT’s overall score.

Pineda continued to dominate the dive events with a fifth place finish and a score of 351.10 in the 3-meter springboard finals. She claimed her third All-American title of the meet while taking fifth in platform with a score of 304.30.

Texas took home more honorable mention titles in platform, with sophomores Jordan Skilken placing 10th and Janie Boyle taking 12th. 

The team finished with a final score of 344.5, following behind first place Virginia (491) and second place North Carolina State (354). 

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Texas Women’s Swim, Dive takes third place at NCAA Championships