MINNEAPOLIS, MN. — First year Caroline Wilson won her third national title — and set a new NCAA record in the process — Saturday night to help the Williams College women's swimming & diving team secure a third-place finish at the 2010 NCAA Div. III Championships.
The Ephs finished with 367 points -- their highest point total since the inaugural women's NCAA Championship Meet in 1981. Sophomore Logan Todhunter, who won national titles in the 200 IM and the 100 and 200 butterfly, was named 2010 Swimmer of the Meet, and head coach Steve Kuster was tabbed 2010 Women's Coach of the Meet.
"I can't say nearly enough about our women's performance here," Kuster said. "Trying to put into words what they accomplished and how well they performed is nearly impossible. I could not be happier and I don't think they could be either. The 15 women we had here are such an outstanding group — they get along so well, they have fun, they enjoy each other, they love to race and they are as motivated a group as I have had at Williams. That's a pretty unique combination of characteristics and it's the first years right through to the seniors. It's just a very special group."
Wilson got the night started off on the right note when she led the 1650 free wire-to-wire, breaking the national record by five seconds and her own personal best time by an incredible 32 seconds to take home the national championship with a time of 16:25.21. It was her third title, along with the 400 IM and the 500 free.
"To go to the NCAAs for the first time, win three titles and set two national records, and defeat the defending national champion in all three events, that's hard to put into words," Kuster said. "Obviously she's a talent, but she's also a hard worker and tough as nails."
Other final night highlights for the Ephs included senior Christina Metcalf winning the consolation final of the 200 breaststroke to finish 9th nationally with a time of 2:20, junior Ellen Ramsey swimming a lifetime-best 2:03.16 in her morning swim of the 200 backstroke and then placing 8th nationally with a time of 2:05.92 in the evening finals, and sophomore Carolyn Geller finishing 18th in the 100 free with a time of 51.95 seconds.
In addition to Metcalf's great swim in the 200 breaststroke, Rebecca Maher placed 18th with a time of 2:23.80 and senior Lisa Cucolo capped her career in style by placing 22nd nationally with a time of 2:24.79. Maher's swim was her personal best time by nearly four seconds.
"That's pretty indicative of how this meet went for us," Kuster said. "Everyone did their part, everyone gave their best, everyone supported one another, and the results show that."
The 400 free relay put a fitting end to the meet for the Ephs as the foursome of Geller, Wilson, junior Jillian Hancock and Todhunter finished 4th with a time of 3:27.85.
Emory University won the national team title with 568.5 points, with Denison second with 452 points. Kenyon College was fourth with 318 points.