March 5, 2013
Seven qualify for NCAA Championships
GROVE CITY, Pa. -- Seven members of the Grove City College women's swimming and diving team will compete in the 2013 NCAA Division III Championships March 20-23 at Conroe Natatorium in Shenandoah, Texas.
Seniors Angela Palumbo (Washington, Pa./Trinity), Kait Riesmeyer (McMurray, Pa./Peters Township) and Jenny Ryan (State College, Pa./State College) will all make their fourth trip to the national championships. Sophomore Lauren Cassano (Venetia, Pa./Peters Township) has qualified for the second consecutive season while junior Kaley Hess (Reamstown, Pa./Cocalico), sophomore Tori Baker (Fairfax, Va./Robinson) and freshman Megan Bilko (Canonsburg, Pa./Canon-McMillan) have qualified for the first time.
Palumbo owns the No. 14 seed in 100 free (51.53 seconds) and enters the Championships seeded 17th in the 200 free (1:52.29). Her time of 23.72 seconds in the 50 free earned the 21st seed. She is a 15-time NCAA Division III All-American.
An 11-time NCAA All-American, Riesmeyer is seeded 18th in the 200 butterfly (2:06.43) and 20th in the 100 butterfly (56.91).
Meanwhile, Ryan will compete in both individual medleys and the 100 free. Ryan is the 24th seed in both the 200 IM (2:07.17) and 400 IM (4:33.74). She is ranked 25th in the 100 free with a top time of 52.07 seconds. Ryan has earned 12 All-America honors in her career.
Cassano is seeded 29th in the 200 backstroke (2:06.44) and 34th in the 100 back (58.09). She competed on Grove City's 200 and 400 medley relay teams at the 2012 NCAA Championships.
Bilko owns the 19th seed in the 1650 with a season-best time of 17:20.59.
Baker and Hess will both compete in relays for Grove City. Baker, Palumbo, Riesmeyer and Ryan will comprise the 200 and 400 free relay squads. The 200 free relay is seeded 16th with a time of 1:35.61. The 400 free relay is 13th with a 3:30.06 performance.
Bilko will join Palumbo, Riesmeyer and Ryan on the 800 free relay, which is seeded 13th with a time of 7:37.96.
Hess will contribute the breaststroke leg to both the 200 and 400 medley relays. Cassano (backstroke), Riesmeyer (butterfly) and Ryan (freestyle) round out the 200 medley relay team. The 200 medley relay is seeded 18th with a time of 1:46.13. Hess, Cassano, Riesmeyer and Palumbo (freestyle) will participate in the 400 medley relay, which is ranked 12th with a time of 3:51.43.
Participants can compete in up to seven events at the Championships with no more than three being individual events. A swimmer can swim two events on an individual basis and compete in all five relays if he/she elects to do so.
Grove City finished 10th at the 2012 NCAA Championships, which marked the program's best-ever finish at the national meet. The Wolverines took 11th in both 2010 and 2011.
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