FAIRFAX, Virginia - Aided by a strong showing in the
100 Freestyle, UNCW's men's team broke open a close meet and cruised to its
11th consecutive Colonial Athletic Association title on Saturday at the McKay
Natatorium in Fairfax, Va.
The Seahawks, who led from wire-to-wire, claimed their 11th
title by 57 points over second-place George Mason.
The women finished third overall, behind James Madison and
Towson, respectively. The Dukes halted a four-year championship reign by Towson
with their first title since 2001.
UNCW held a 17-point lead after 16 events after GMU narrowed
its deficit with pair of top-five finishes in the 200 Backstroke. In the 100
Freestyle, though, UNCW, lead by Joe Gallene, placed three swimmers in the top
five and added a seventh-place finish to push its lead to 64 points. Gallene,
who was UNCW's lone individual champion on the day, posted a time of 44.25 to
win the event.
Freshman Valtteri Halonen finished second and earned All-CAA
honors in the 200 Backstroke while senior Brandon Hicks also earned
all-conference honors when he placed second in the 200 Butterfly.
In the pivotal 100 Free, junior Michael Williams gave UNCW
valuable third-place points and earned All-CAA honors. Freshman C.J. Fiala was
fourth and sophomore Gabe Thran was seventh as UNCW captured 63 points in the
The Seahawks finished off their title performance with the
400 Free Relay of Fiala, Thran, Gallene and Williams setting a meet record with
a winning time of 2:57.34.
In the women's 100 Free, UNCW was represented in the top
three by senior Anna Munger (second place) and junior Carly Tanner (third
The women's 400 Free Relay also claimed a conference
championship when the relay of Tanner, Mattie Riley, Libby Mayock and Munger
set a meet record with a time of 3:20.81.