After finishing fourth in the 200 breaststroke at last year's ACC Championships, Wixted earned a spot on the podium in Saturday evening's championship final. The Greenwood Village, Colo., native clocked 2:11.85 in a third-place finish to break her own school record in the event, set a pool record and collect her sixth NCAA provisional standard of the weekend individually. Wixted also garnered All-ACC honors Friday with a third-place showing in the 100 breast.
"Christine really came through tonight to have a PR, set a school record and go 2:11.8 in the 200 to finish third," said head coach Dan Colella.
Duke saw another program record fall in the final event of the evening, the 400 free relay. Sophomore Lauren Weaver, junior Cara Vogel, senior Meghan Dwyer and Wixted posted a time of 3:22.64 to best the previous mark of 3:23.62 set at last year's ACC Championships. The Blue Devil relay earned an NCAA provisional standard and a new pool record while coming in eighth overall. Weaver swam a 50.92 split out of the leadoff position for a personal best and Duke's top mark of the season in the 100 free.
Blue Devil swimmers recorded NCAA 'B' cuts individually as well, with Vogel and Dwyer grabbing a pair of NCAA provisional times in the prelims of the 200 back. Both returned to the water Saturday evening to swim in the consolation final. The program record-holder in the event, Vogel finished 13th in the final at 1:58.55 for her second NCAA 'B' cut of the day. Dwyer touched just behind Vogel in a 15th-place, 1:59.27 performance.
In the bonus consolation final of the 200 back, junior Emily Kintz improved upon her morning prelims time with a 1:59.53 clocking to take 20th, while freshman Megan McCarroll placed 24th at 2:00.72. McCarroll also recorded a personal-best 1:59.92 in the event prelims Saturday morning.
Sophomore Kelly Hagerty turned in a 23rd-place showing in the finals of the 100 free, swimming 52.22 to move up 14 spots from a 37th-place finish a year ago. Hagerty was one of five Blue Devils to post a personal-best performance in the prelims of the event, while freshman Katherine Plevka notched personal-bests in both the prelims and the bonus consolation final of the 200 breast, swimming 2:19.78 in the finals to take 19th. Fellow rookie Ali Horn collected a 21st-place finish in the finals of the 200 fly, touching in 2:03.87.
The Blue Devils concluded the meet in ninth place, just 2.5 points behind eighth-place Georgia Tech. The Virginia women captured their fifth consecutive ACC title with a team score of 848 points, followed by North Carolina (615) and Florida State (460).
During the conference championships, the Duke women established new program records in the 50 free (Weaver twice at 22.86 and 22.79), 100 back (McCarroll - 55.22), 200 breast (Wixted - 2:11.85), 400 free relay (Weaver, Vogel, Dwyer, Wixted - 3:22.64), 200 medley relay (McCarroll, Wixted, Niessl, Weaver - 1:40.55) and the 400 medley relay (McCarroll, Wixted, Weaver, Vogel - 3:40.71). The Blue Devils also claimed one ACC title, with senior Jessica Lyden winning the women's 3-meter diving competition on Friday evening.
"For those on the team that will be returning, they see that the conference has definitely gotten a lot more competitive, and that we have things to think about, things to work on for the future," Colella said. "It was definitely good to see the group really step up here in the last session ... I think some good things came out of this last session that we can build on going into next season."
The Blue Devils return to the Christiansburg Aquatic Center next week for the 2012 ACC Men's Swimming Championship, slated for Feb. 22-25.
2012 ACC Women's Swimming & Diving Championships - Final Team Standings
|2. North Carolina||615|
|3. Florida State||460|
|4. Virginia Tech||401|
|7. NC State||247.5|
|8. Georgia Tech||195.5|
|11. Boston College||60|