AKRON, Ohio – The Baldwin Wallace University women's swimming and diving team claimed one Ohio Athletic Conference championship and set two school records as it stands in fourth place after the first day of competition at the OAC Championships hosted by Wilmington College in the Ocasek Natatorium on the campus of the University of Akron.
BW is fourth of five teams with 228 points. Defending cahmpion and crosstown rival John Carroll University leads with 228 points.
The top three individuals and the top two relay teams earn All-OAC honors.
The Yellow Jackets were led by freshman freestyler Bella Ratino (Mentor/Hawken), junior All-OAC freestyler Allie Thorson (Amherst/Marion Steele) and junior All-OAC freestyler Olivia Jacob (Canton/McKinley) as the trio claimed the top three finishes in the 500-yard freestyle. Ratino won her first OAC Championship and claimed her first All-OAC honor as she touched the wall first in a school-record time of 5:04.60. Thorson, who claimed her third career All-OAC honor, was the runner-up in a career-best time of 5:12.67. Jacob, who earns her third career All-OAC honor, placed third in a career-best time of 5:13.89.
In addition, junior All-OAC stroker Erika Nockengost (Cuyahoga Falls) placed fifth in the 200-yard individual medley in a season-best time of 2:14.17. Freshman freestyler Madeleine Pierce (Perry) took seventh in the 50-yard freestyle in career-best time of 25.09 seconds. Freshman stroker Kayla McClintock (Venetia, Pa./Peters Township) took 13th in the 500-yard freestyle in a time of 5:29.78. McClintock set a career-best in the prelims with a time of 5:29.49.
In relay action, the 200-yard freestyle unit of Pierce, sophomore stroker Lauren Martello (Huron/Sandusky), Thorson and senior freestyler Claire Onchuck (Darrien, Ill./Hinsdale South) finished in fourth place and tied the school-record with a time of 1:40.76. The 400-yard medley squad of Pierce, junior stroker Ellie Clymer (Independence), Nockengost and Thorson took third in a time of 4:01.59.
BW is back in action for the second day of the OAC Championships on Friday, February 15. Preliminary action will begin at 10 a.m. and the finals will be contested at 6 p.m. The OAC Championships will be contested on Saturday, February 16.