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Merch Madness
Courtesy:JMUSports.com Release:02/05/2011
Courtesy: JMUSports.com

HUNTINGTON, W.Va., Feb. 5, 2011 – Eight James Madison swimmers and divers combined to with nine of the 11 individual events as the JMU swimming and diving team defeated Marshall 145-94 at the Frederick A. Fitch Natatorium on Saturday.

The Dukes also won both relays to claim 11 of a possible 13 events on their way to improving to 10-5 in dual meets. It was a balanced performance for Madison as junior diver Nicole Jotso (Suffern, N.Y./Suffern) was the only participant with more than one win. Jotso claimed first in both the 1-meter and 3-meter diving events scoring a 307.43 in the 1-meter and a 305.18 in the 3-meter.

The day started well for JMU as it won 200-yard medley relay. The team of seniors Carly Gibson (Bethesda, Md./Academy of the Holy Cross) and Lisa Colapietro (Hollidaysburg, Pa./Hollidaysburg), junior Catalina Mendieta (Parkland, Fla./Marjory Stoneman Douglas) and sophomore Andrea Criscuolo (Point Pleasant, N.J./Point Pleasant) touched the wall in 1:47.98 seconds.

Criscuolo, Mendieta and Gibson also each claimed individual wins for the Dukes.  Criscuolo won the 100 backstroke in a time of 1:00.71 while Mendieta finished first in the 50 free (24.52). Gibson won the 200 free with a time of 1:55.13.

Other individual winners for Madison include freshman Mary Gargula (Richmond, Va./James River) in the 100 breaststroke (1:08.93), senior Emily Konieczny (West Springfield, Mass./Granby) in the 500 free (5:08.55), junior Melissa Helock (Scotch Plains, N.J./Scotch Plains Fanwood) in the 100 free (54.29) and freshman Morgan Johnson (Woodstock, Ga./Woodstock) in the 1,000 free (10:25.63).

The Dukes completed the event with a top time in the 200-yard freestyle relay. Gibson teamed with senior Morgan McCarthy (New Castle, Del./St. Mark’s) and juniors Lauren Kranz (Clifton, Va./James Robinson) and Eva Hannesdottir (Seltjarnarnes, Iceland/Kvennaskolinn) to finish in a time of 1:39.56.

JMU also sent several participants to Blacksburg, Va. to compete in the Virginia Tech Invitational. Prelims began at 9:30 a.m. on Saturday with finals at 6 p.m. Sunday the Dukes compete in five more events with prelims again at 9:30 a.m. and finals at 4 p.m.

Virginia Tech Invitational
Christiansburg, Va., Feb. 5, 2011 -- Sophomore Leah Webber (Midlothian, Va./MathSci at Clover Hill) led the way for JMU collecting a first-place finish by winning the 100-yard butterfly with a time of 57.19 seconds. Her preliminary time of 57.16 was the fifth-fastest time in school history.

“Leah put a complete day together with two good swims today,” head coach Sam Smith said. “She was really strong in the water with a career-best time of 57.16.”

Other top finishers for Madison include senior Erika Lupacchino (Chester, Va./Thomas Dale) taking second in 100 breaststroke while freshman Shannon Dubay (South Windsor, Conn./South Windsor) took third. Luppachino finished in a time of 1:06.09 and Dubay touched the wall at 1:07.17.

“Erika is finishing her career strong,” Smith said. “Coming in as a leader and racing with a lot of passion, speaks to what our team is about. She displayed great leadership today.”

Freshman Addy Morrison (Williamsburg, Va./Bruton) also collected a first-place finish, winning the 400 individual medley with a time of 4:35.63.

Junior Emily Vance (Moraga, Calif./Campolindo) recorded to top-five finishes, taking third in the 500 freestyle (5:11.14) and fifth in the 200 freestyle.

Sophomore Becca Senn (Nashville, Tenn./Hillsboro) was fourth in the 100-yard backstroke, tying for the ninth best time in school history at 58.31 seconds. Fellow sophomore Caroline Burns (Severna Park, Md./Severn School) was just 0.4 seconds behind her to take fifth. Sophomore Kate Kessler (Stevenson Ranch, Calif./West Ranch) took sixth.

Burns, Lupacchino and Senn finished sixth, eighth and ninth respectively in the 50 freestyle.

No team scores were kept for the meet.

Action continues on Sunday from Christiansburg Aquatic Center in Christiansburg, Va., with the 100 freestyle, 200 breaststroke, 200 butterfly, 200 individual medley and the 1,650 freestyle. Preliminaries will be held at 9:30 a.m. with finals scheduled to start at 4 p.m.

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