BOYDS, Md. - The Catholic University women's swimming & diving team earned 204 points during the opening night of the 2019 Landmark Conference Championships and sit in second place, just 20 points behind Susquehanna (224).
The Cardinals started the night with a bronze medal finish in the 200-freestyle relay as freshman Megan Leibfreid, freshman Angela Castano, senior Rachael Zarlinski, and sophomore Caroline Beal teamed up for a 1:43.14 time to open the scoring in the final events.
Catholic followed with three top-eight finishes in the 500-freestyle event. Senior Valerie Sander (5:20.45), junior Elizabeth Spernal (5:22.07), and freshman Kelly Smith (5:22.70) went five, six, seven to earn more final finishers for Catholic than the rest of the Landmark teams. The freshman duo of Colleen McDonald and Kate Von Heeringen took 12th and 15th in the consolation final.
Fellow freshman Cagney Boyle represented the team in the 200-IM A-Final and finished just off the podium with a 2:13.48 fourth place finish. Sophomores Molly Donnellan (10th), Grace Smith (12th), and Ally Noccioli (16th) all qualified to swim in the consolation final.
The Cardinals again placed three in the top eight of the 50-freestyle sprint to keep the pace with Susquehanna. With a time of 24:25, Castano not only took home a silver medal, but also broke the school record for the 50-free event. Leibfreid (24.76) and Beal (24.90) finished 5th and 6th, respectively.
The women took fourth in their final event of the evening, the 400-medley relay. Beal, Donnellan, Castano, and Zarlinski combined for a 4:15.65, outpacing their seed time by 12 seconds to earn points for Catholic.
Junior Mackenzie Earley dove for sixth place with 237.50 points to earn points in the 1-meter dive event.
The Landmark Conference Championships continue Saturday, February 16. Preliminaries commence at 10 a.m. Visit the Landmark Conference Championship for live results, video stream and meet updates.