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Denison rookies shine on Friday at nationals

KT Kustritz  |  Photo by Joe Buvid
KT Kustritz | Photo by Joe Buvid

SHENANDOAH, Texas—Denison enters the final day of the 2017 NCAA Division III Swimming & Diving Championship in fourth place with 234 points.  They trail third-place Kenyon by 36 points with five events remaining.  Emory University is first with 471.5 and Williams is second with 327 points.

Denison rookie KT Kustritz placed second in the 100 breaststroke with a time 1:02.45 marking her first individual event All-American finish of her career.  Another first-year, Kate Mesaros picked up her first certificate by taking eighth in 1:03.22.  DU logged 28 points in the event.

Denison's strong freshman class continued to shine in the 1-meter dive as Allison Fitzgerald qualified for the championship final after a preliminary score of 411.35.  Fitzgerald improved her score to 424.20 in the finals to finish in seventh place overall.  Fitzgerald was ninth in Wednesday's 3-meter competition.

In the 200 butterfly, Halli Garza won the consolation final by shaving 1.53 seconds off her time in morning trials.  Garza touched in 2:01.75 to place ninth after taking seventh in 2016 and sixth in 2015.  Her time in this year's B-Final was a career-best at nationals.  It fell just shy of her school-record time of 2:01.09 set in 2015.

The 800 freestyle relay team of Campbell Costley, Hannah Rusinko, Erica Hsu and Alex Elizeus placed 12th after a time of 7:31.66.

On Saturday, Denison will take part in the 1,650 freestyle, 100 freestyle, 200 backstroke, 200 breaststroke, 3-meter dive and the 400 free relay.  Preliminaries will start at 10 a.m. CST followed by finals at 6 p.m. CST.

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