WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind.— Arkansas sophomore Katie Whitbeck broke the school record in the 100y butterfly and the No. 18 Razorback swimming and diving team posted four NCAA “B” cut times on the second day of the Purdue Invitational at the Boilermaker Aquatic Center in West Lafayette, Ind.
“We came out flat in the morning, which I was concerned about before we even got here this morning after a great first day yesterday,” Arkansas coach Jeff Poppell said. “That is what makes these invitational events that are six sessions long different than any dual meet we compete in during the year. The athletes have to learn to be solid for three days in a row, six sessions in a row. We had a lot of lifetime best times this morning but at the same time we were still a little flat in some areas I thought we could have been a little better.
“Tonight in finals I thought we did a fantastic job racing. We had two solid relay swims tonight. The highlight of the night was Yi-Ting winning the 400 IM with a 4:13.67, which was a fantastic swim for her and Jamie Marks 4:16.65 in that race was also pretty good. We now have one day left. Sunday is always our best day of these meets, so we are really looking forward to coming back and finishing the meet strong.”
Whitbeck touched in at 54.80 in the 100y butterfly event to set the new school record and a new career best time. The previous record was 55.05 by Katie Kastes at the Hoosierland Open in 2007.
“Katie setting a school record in the 100 fly was fantastic,” Poppell said. “Katie has come a long way in the last year; from her freshman year to now, as her results show. She has taken her swimming to another level and it was great to see her first have a fantastic race in the 100y butterfly and then for her to come back and swim the 200y freestyle in a personal best time.”
In the first event of the night, senior Yi-Ting Siow took first place in the 400y individual medley with an NCAA “B” cut time of 4:13.67. Jamie Marks followed in second with her own NCAA “B” cut time of 4:16.65. Both swimmers knocked at least three seconds off their marks from the morning session. Sophomore Jillienne Schilling touched in at 4:21.24 to earn a sixth-place finish. Fellow sophomore Katie Davis swam a career-best 4:23.84 to finish 10th while junior Erica Totten and freshman Haley Smith placed 12th and 16th, respectively.
Whitbeck’s recording-breaking 100y butterfly time earner her a fourth-place finish. Fellow sophomore Lisa Lunkenheimer stopped the clock at 55.46 to take seventh. Senior Lynette Ng finished 13th with a time of 57.10.
Whitbeck continued her strong night as the top finisher for Arkansas in the 200y freestyle event, bettering her career-best time she set in the preliminaries to finish in an NCAA “B” cut time of 1:49.22. Freshman Chelsea Franklin won the “B” final and finished in ninth place with a time of 1:50.55. Schilling followed in 13th with a time of 1:51.95. Courtney Hubbard and Alison Templin both stopped the clock at 1:52.37 to tie for 15th place. Franklin, Schilling and Hubbard’s time all represented new-career bests which they previously set in Saturday’s morning session.
In the 100y breaststroke, Siow finished in second place with a time of 1:01.71. The senior clocked a NCAA “B” cut time of 1:01.20 in the preliminaries. Leah Pierce finished fifth in 1:03.34 followed by Erin Neumann in seventh place with a time of 1:04.26.
In the 100y backstroke, Lynette Ng finished clocked in at 57.49 to finish fifth after she touched in at 57.23 in the preliminary. Freshman Haley Smith earned a sixth-place finish with a time of 57.92. She swam her best time of the day (57.32) in the morning session.
The Razorback 200y medley relay team of Ng, Siow, Lunkenheimer and Whitbeck finished fourth with a time of 1:42.97. The 800y freestyle medley team also earned a fourth place finish as the quartet of Whitbeck, Franklin, Schilling and Siow touched in at 7:23.88. Both times rank as the third fastest in school history.
Sophomore Alex Roman finished 14th in the women’s 1-meter diving event with a score of 218.70. Freshman Alyssa Tomlinson placed 19th with a 161.70.
Other action from the morning session in the 400y IM included Sarah Rowland who stopped the clock at 4:36.91 and Maddie Fogel who touched in at 4:3.67. Freshman Alicia Meinz swam a time of 1:02.94 in the 100y butterfly event. Freshman Kara Wilkerson (2:00.17) and Fogel (2:02.58) swam in the 200y freestyle event.
In the 100y breaststroke event, Sarah Howard just missed qualifying for the finals with a time of 1:07.04, followed by Shara Sutphen who finished in 1:08.39 and Courtney O’Grady who touched in at 1:08.58. Alicia Meinz, Kara Wilkerson and Gina Bargiachi also saw action in the 100y backstroke event.
Sunday begins with preliminaries in the 200y backstroke at 10 a.m. Eastern time followed by the 100y freestyle, 200 breaststroke, 200y butterfly and the 1,650y freestyle. The women’s platform diving event is scheduled to begin at noon. There will only be finals for the platform event.
For complete results and a recap from Sunday, please visit ArkansasRazorbacks.com. Live results can be found at purduesports.com.