Written by David Mann
BUFFALO, N.Y. – The Darton State College Swimming teams finished 3rd at the 2013 NJCAA Swimming and Diving Championships in Buffalo, N.Y., Saturday.
Sophomore Anna Macht led the charge for Darton. She won silver medals in all three of her individual events and another silver in a team relay. The Lady Cavaliers won four bronze medals in the team relays of the 400 medley, 800 free, 200 free and 400 free.
The Lady Cavs’ 3rd place finish was a mere 89 points behind Daytona State, who finished second. Indian River State finished first.
“It was a battle though,” Darton head women’s swimming coach Molly Gilbert said. “One day we’d be in 2nd and Daytona 3rd, and we’d flip-flop. It was a good fight.”
Darton’s 862 total points were a big improvement from 2012, when the Lady Cavaliers finished in 5th place with 690 points. The program more than doubled its point-total 0f 420 garnered just two years ago at nationals.
Macht, along with teammates Emily Mitchell, Gail Calhoun, Sandra Guerrero, Anna Barnes, Sandra Hoop and Kelsey Achin, received College Swimming Coaches Association of America All-America honors.
On the men’s side, the Cavaliers improved from a 4th place finish in 2012, and it was due to a true team effort, Darton head men’s swimming coach Will Breehl said.
“All 18 of our guys scored, so everyone contributed to this,” he said. “And everyone swam his fastest time ever, in every race.”
The Cavaliers’s 400-yard medley relay team of Gabe Downey, TJ Bland, Kyle Batson and Matthew Jones earned a bronze medal in the 400-yard medley relay.
Bland went on to win a silver medal in the 100 breast, and a bronze in the 200 breast, with respective times of 55.24 and 201.77.
Eight Cavaliers earned CSCAA All-America honors: Bland, Batson, Downey, Jones, Deniss Jariga, Trey Martin, JD Rosseau and Ethan Wolovich.
The Darton men’s team scored a total of 831 points. Indian River State College (Fla.) won with 1832 points, and Daytona State College (Fla. ) finished second with 1319 points.