INDIANAPOLIS – The 2018 NCAA Division III Swimming and Diving Championships were held March 21-23 in Indianapolis, Ind. and the event yielded a pair of All-America performances and six more honorable mention efforts from Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (MIAC) competitors. The top eight finishers in each event at the National Championships earned All-America accolades while places 9-16 received honorable mention accolades.
MIAC Women's Swimmer of the Year Katelyn Strauss earned All-America honors in the 200-yard butterfly, finishing fifth with a finals time of 2:02.86. Strauss also placed 27th as an individual swimmer in the 500-yard freestyle and earned honorable mention All-America recognition alongside St. Thomas teammates Tiana Molitor, Alex Howard and Kate Smarjesse on the Tommies' 14th-place 400-yard freestyle relay team that clocked in at 3:28.13 in finals.
Gustavus junior Maggie Webster finished 11th overall in the 50-yard freestyle, earning honorable mention accolades with a time of 23.53 and took 20th in the 100-yard freestyle. Webster also teamed with Kennedy Holwerda, Alyssa Lokensgard and Kate Reilly to claim honorable mention honors with a 10th place finish (1:33.88) in the 200-yard freestyle relay. As an individual, the Gusties' Reilly placed 20th in the 50-yard freestyle, 30th in the 100-yard freestyle and 42nd in the 100-yard butterfly. St. Olaf sophomore Caitlin Croasdell also represented the MIAC, placing 22nd overall in the 1,650-yard freestyle.
Gustavus and St. Thomas both qualified a slew of relay teams for nationals as well. The UST 200- and 800-yard freestyle relay teams each missed consolation finals by one spot, both finishing in 17th place. The Tommies also took 23rd in the 400-yard medley relay and 27th in the 200-yard medley relay. Meanwhile, Gustavus placed 25th in the 200-yard medley relay and declared a false start in the 400-yard medley relay.
On the men's side, Gustavus junior Tanner Sonnek earned a second straight All-America honor in the 100-yard breaststroke, finishing seventh with a time of 54.85. He also competed in the 200-yard breaststroke but was disqualified on a turn violation.
Reigning MIAC Men's Swimmer of the Year Bailey Biwer earned a pair of honorable mention All-America honors after placing 14th overall in the 100-yard butterfly with a time of 49.45 and 11th in the 200-yard butterfly, clocking in at 1:48.90. Biwer also competed on the St. Thomas 200-yard freestyle relay team that finished 21st overall (1:24.26) with teammates Tom Negaard, Hunter Neilsen and Charles Hynes. The UST 800-yard freestyle relay was disqualified in prelims. Negaard also finished 33rd overall in the 100-yard backstroke.
Four-time MIAC Men's Diver of the Year Andrew Grabowski received honorable mention All-America recognition in his first time competing at the National Championships. Grabowski placed 14th in the 3-meter diving competition with a score of 422.10. He also competed in the 1-meter diving competition, taking 21st with a score of 381.55.
Overall, Gustavus and St. Thomas each finished with 12 points in the men's events (tied for 39th) and 20 points in the women's events (tied for 20th). Emory captured its ninth consecutive women's swimming and diving championship while Denison earned its fourth men's D-III title. The 2018 National Championships were hosted by Franklin College and the Indiana Sports Corporation at the IUPUI Natatorium in Indianapolis, Indiana. Nearly 600 participants competed in the Championships.