Pios women defeat Whitworth for first time in over a decade

Pios women defeat Whitworth for first time in over a decade

SPOKANE, Wash. -- For the first time in over a decade, the Lewis & Clark Pioneers women's team was victorious over the Whitworth Pirates in a Northwest Conference dual with a 108-97 victory on Friday night at the Whitworth Aquatic Center.

Sam Duran and Kassie Kometani were multi-event winners as the Pioneers won five of the nine individual events as well as one relay. The win moves the women's team to 1-2 on the season in NWC duals.

Andrew Butcher and Miles French won men's individual events, but the Pioneers lost 149-56.

"It's great to get our team on the road for the first time this season," said Lewis & Clark head coach Chris Fantz. "We knew the women's meet could be close and our team prepared to race and got after it. Coming away with a solid win that came down to the final race kept the energy high for us all night."

In the finale, the Pioneers won the 200 Freestyle relay by just over two seconds when Kometani touched ahead of Whitworth's Jamie Siegler on the final leg. Kometani had the fastest split in the race, 25.06, to give the Pios a time of 1:43.94. Claire Greene, Sabrina Murray and Duran were the first three legs of the race.

Kometani has five wins in her first six individual events of the season after first-place finishes in the 50 and 100 Freestyles on Friday night. She was a nearly a full second clear of Jamie Holmes from Whitworth in the 50 Freestyle, finishing in 25.19. In the 100 Freestyle, Kometani won in 55.31. Julia Brandt and Liora Gonicman were fourth and fifth, respectively, in the 50 Freestyle. Brandt was the Pios' top finisher in the 100 Backstroke, placing fourth in 1:07.57, followed by Anna DePaepe and Gonicman.

Duran took the 200 Freestyle title with a mark of 2:01.41 to lead a 1-2-3 finish by the Pioneers. Margot Chirayath was second (2:08.88) and Kasia Preski finished third (2:14.15). Duran also won the 100 Butterfly in 1:01.44, while Lucia Brammer was third (1:04.66) and Chirayath took fourth (1:05.69).

Murray was the other individual winner for the Pios. The freshman took the 1,650 Freestyle, her first time competing in the race at the collegiate level, with a mark of 19:00.71. Anna James and Emily Skaggs were fourth and fifth, respectively. Murray also took second in the 500 Freestyle, clocking in at 5:40.07. Fellow freshman Erin Khong was second in the 400 Individual Medley with a mark of 5:01.97, while Greene was fourth in the race. Greene placed third in the 100 Freestyle and Alex Raphael finished fifth. Khong was third in the 100 Breaststroke. Her time of 1:12.91 gave her the best result for the Pios, followed by Raphael and Preski.

"On both sides, our team continued last week's trend of strong finishes by our upperclassmen and event winners from our freshmen, as well," said Fantz. "The well-rounded lineup is promising for our future."

Butcher won the 100 Freestyle for the second time in three duals. His time of 50.93 was a tenth of a second faster than Keenan Robinson of Whitworth. Butcher finished second in the 200 Freestyle at 1:51.60. Bergh placed second in the 1,650 Freestyle at 17:59.06, while Matthew Bress and Ben Virgin took fourth and fifth, respectively.

French was victorious in the 100 Breaststroke at 1:02.61, clearing Blake James of Whitworth by just under a second. Sam Smith was fifth. 

Kyle Monteleone was second in the 100 Butterfly. With a time of 55.40, the freshman lost to Whitworth's Eben Schumann by under three seconds. Monteleone took third in the 500 Freestyle (5:06.88), followed by Bergh in fourth and Jonathan Torres in sixth.

William Witmer was the Pios' top finisher in the 50 Freestyle, taking fourth in 23.32. Sam Raphael and Rowan Gannon followed in the next two spots. Matt Jackson took fourth in the 400 Individual Medley (4:40.52) followed by French. Freshman Ian Shepel gave Lewis & Clark its best finish in the 100 Backstroke after placing third in 58.30. Sam Bundenthal was fifth and Gowan was sixth.

The Lewis & Clark women's team of Brandt, Khong, Chirayath and Raphael were second in the 200 Medley relay with a time of 2:01.65. The Pios were third in both men's relays, as the men fell to 0-3 in NWC duals this season.

The Pioneers resume the weekend road trip on Saturday against Whitman. The dual begins at 1 p.m.