Augusta Lewis, Ava Sealander Earn SCIAC Titles on Third Day of League Championships

Freshman Ava Sealander earned her first collegiate SCIAC title in the 100-yard butterfly
Freshman Ava Sealander earned her first collegiate SCIAC title in the 100-yard butterfly

COMMERCE, Calif. - First-year swimmers Augusta Lewis (400 IM) and Ava Sealander (100 fly) picked up individual SCIAC titles for the Claremont-Mudd-Scripps Women's Swimming and Diving team on the third day of the SCIAC Championships on Saturday evening at the Brenda Villa Aquatic Center.

Lewis set a SCIAC record in the IM for the second straight day, winning with a time of 4:23.43, over eight and a half seconds faster than her closest competition, classmate Natalie Larsen. Sealander won a much closer race, finishing just two-tenths of a second ahead of Madison Kauahi (55.54 to 55.74) to take her first collegiate title. 

Despite the wins, the Athenas dropped into second place overall at SCIACs with one day left, trailing Pomona-Pitzer 791 to 759. Occidental is a distant third with 345 points. 

Lewis also passed a school record which had held since 2004, when Lisal Smith finished in 4:27.18 to win the Division III national title. She is well under the NCAA "B" cut line of 4:30.76, as she seems likely to earn a trip to the NCAA Division III Championships in Greensboro, N.C. next month. The 55.54 was an NCAA "B" cut for Sealander as well. 

Sophomore Mia Syme came in fourth in the 400 IM, missing third by just .21 to almost give CMS a clean sweep of the podium for the second day in a row (after finishing first, second and third in the 500 yesterday). Junior Bryn Edwards had a close second-place finish in the 100-yard breaststroke, finishing in 1:04.84, behind winner Mackenzie Cummings of Pomona-Pitzer (1:04.53), while junior Claire Bacon-Brenes earned All-SCIAC honors with a third-place finish in 1:05.04, earning her way on the podium by just four-hundredths of a second. 

CMS also had a strong showing in the 200 free, as the Athenas had two of the three All-SCIAC performers. Senior Riley Hoffman came in second in 1:52.57, just ahead of sophomore Natalia Orbach-Mandel in third in 1:52.73, as Brittany Percin of Caltech earned the tite in 1:51.99. 

The Athenas lost their team lead in the final individual event of the day, the 100-yard backstroke, when Pomona-Pitzer had the top three finishers. The Sagehens also edged CMS in the 400-yard medley relay to close out day three, although the 3:49.90 for CMS was an NCAA "B" cut.  

The Athenas hope to make up some of the small deficit right away tomorrow in the 1650, where Syme is the defending SCIAC record holder. The 100 free, and the 200-yard breaststroke, backstroke and butterfly will also take place tomorrow, which could potentially come down to the final relay to determine the SCIAC champion.