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Kane, Fitzgerald highlight Friday night at NCAC's

Carolyn Kane  |  Photo by Craig Hicks
Carolyn Kane | Photo by Craig Hicks

GRANVILLE, Ohio—Denison senior Carolyn Kane ran her career total of North Coast Athletic Conference Championships to 15 after a pair of wins on Friday night.  Kane and the Big Red hold a 220 point lead over Kenyon College entering the final day of competition.  Through 14 of 21 events, Denison has scored 1,433 points.  Kenyon is second with 1,213 and DePauw is third with 782.

For the third-straight year, Kane is the champion of the 100 fly.  She held off first-year teammate Angela Le for the win, touching in 55.63.  Le finished in 56.25 which was a new career-best and a 'B' cut performance.  In third, Zoe Whelan ended in 57.64 and Eva Jorn rounded out the A-Final with a ninth place showing and a time of 58.79.  For Kane, her 15 conference championships moved her into third place all-time in the Denison record books.  She trails only Olivia Zaleski (19) and Alyssa Swanson (18).

The 200 medley relay, Casey Kirby, KT Kustritz, Le and Kane recorded a winning time of 1:43.16.  That was the eighth win in the 200 medley relay for Denison since 2008.

On Wednesday night, first-year diver Allison Fitzgerald won the 3-meter board and tonight she completed the sweep with a victory on the 1-meter board.  She posted an 11-dive score of 465.05, breaking the school record that had been held by Kelly Frazier since 2013.

Denison's divers occupied five of the top six positions in the final standings of the 1-meter.  Trailing Fitzgerald, Emma Weber logged a score of 431.25.  Senior Sarah Lopez posted an all-conference finish by placing third with a score of 4:15.75.  Naomi Clayton took fourth in 377.60 and Katherine Hennigan finished sixth in 370.00.  DU's divers doubled their lead from 110 points entering the event to 220 points afterward.

KT Kustritz continued to make her case for NCAC Newcomer of the Year after her victory in the 100 breaststroke.  Kustritz won with a time of 1:02.86, marking her fifth first-place finish of the meet.  Kate Mesaros followed in second with a season-best 'B' cut time of 1:03.13.  Ellen Higdon also logged her best time with a 'B' cut in 1:04.53.  Gabriella Nutter rounded out the scoring in the 100 breast by placing eighth in 1:08.10.

The fifth win of the night came in the 100 backstroke as Kirby locked up her first individual NCAC title in 56.67.  Once again, Le placed second in 57.33 which was a season-best 'B' cut time. Kurkjian finished fourth in 58.65 while Zoe Whelan closed out the A-Final with a ninth-place finish and a time of 1:00.27.

Senior Halli Garza posted a runner-up finish in the 400 IM with a time of 4:28.54.  Natalie Zaravella ended up fourth in 4:29.36 and Erica Hsu landed in sixth after her time of 4:31.59.  The winner of the 400 IM was DePauw's Angela Newlon in 4:26.27 after Kenyon's Marysol Arce was disqualified for a non-simultaneous touch on the far wall.

Kenyon made a move in the 200 freestyle by totaling 123 points in the event.  That allowed the Ladies to move into the overall lead by 14 points, momentarily. For DU in the event, senior Campbell Costley placed fifth (1:52.92) and Alex Elizeus was eighth in 1:55.92.

Saturday's events consist of the 1,650 freestyle, 200 backstroke, 100 free, 200 breaststroke, 200 fly, 400 free relay and for the first time, the 100 IM.  Prelims start at 10 a.m. and finals will commence at 6:30 p.m.

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