POTSDAM, N.Y. - The Saint Michael's College women's swimming & diving team leads the State University of New York at Potsdam's North Country Invitational following day one in Maxcy Hall Pool on Friday. The men are second after setting one school record and seeing sophomore Connor Hopkins (Windham, N.H./Windham) claim the fastest 50-yard freestyle time in the Northeast-10 Conference this winter.
The Purple Knight women, who won two of the past three North Country Invitationals, have 282 points to lead the host Bears by 47 points in a seven-school field. The men, who took second at the past two NCI meets, trail Clarkson University by only 36 points despite carrying nine members. Six men's squads are competing at the Purple and Gold's final meet of the semester. The final day's action begins on Saturday at 10 a.m.
Hopkins, senior Spencer Ralston (Hebron, Conn./Cushing Academy) and juniors Seamus Butler (Waltham, Mass./Waltham) and Pat Thornton (Lawrenceville, N.J./Lawrence) won the 400-yard medley relay in a time of 3:39.58, shattering the two-year-old school record by 3.64 seconds and claiming the fourth-best time in the NE10 this season. Thornton had also been a member of the 2015 foursome.
Hopkins topped the 50 free field at 21.36, coming within 0.01 seconds of Pierce Farrington's '18 three-year-old program mark with the top time in the league in 2017-18, bettering the prior leader by 0.52 ticks. Hopkins also anchored a 200 free relay quartet where he joined Butler, Ralston and first-year Payton Stewart (Keene, N.H./Keene) to touch the wall in 1:30.28, good for second place, only 0.20 seconds short of the winner, and within 0.62 ticks of an eight-year-old school mark, the program's second-oldest swimming record.
Ralston won the 500 free in 4:56.12, the fourth-best time in the NE10, while Thornton took second at 5:01.84; the third-place finisher was 11.19 seconds back. Thornton captured the 100-yard butterfly race (54.04), while first-year Dan Fortier (Sandwich, Mass./Sandwich) claimed third (56.24), coming within 0.1 seconds of second place. Stewart was fourth (56.97), and junior Aidan Mulderrig (Rockville Centre, N.Y./South Side) took sixth (57.18) but was 0.03 seconds out of fifth. Butler placed third in the 100-yard breaststroke (1:03.62), Mulderrig finished fifth in the 200-yard individual medley (2:09.71), and Stewart was fourth in the 50 free (23:08), with Butler in sixth (23.29) but only 0.16 seconds out of the top five.
Junior Patty Kohn (Weston, Conn./Greenwich) and sophomore Lauren Giampietro (Watertown, Conn./Watertown) both earned two wins, including while siding with senior Theresa Murphy (Pittsfield, Mass./Pittsfield) and sophomore Sarah White (Lakeville, Mass./Apponequet Regional) to take the 400 medley relay (4:16.56). Giampietro won the 100 breast (1:13.37), and Kohn topped the 1,650 free (18:29.12) with the fourth-best time in the NE10. First-year Kristin Burlew (Springfield, Vt./Hartford) won the 500 free (5:39.71) for her first career individual victory, edging sophomore Reiley Adelson (Saratoga Springs, N.Y./Saratoga Springs), who was second (5:49.83). Adelson had also earned her first solo win last Saturday, during the 1,000 free.
Murphy was second in the 100 fly (1:02.92) and White third (1:04.91), while White joined Kohn, senior Coral Santos (Pawtucket, R.I./Saint Raphael Academy) and junior Tess Grimaldi (Higganum, Conn./Haddam-Killingworth) to place second in the 200 free relay (1:47.72) and come within 0.37 seconds of the winner. Saint Michael's went 1-2-3 in the 1,650 free, as first-year Meg Geschwind (Rochester, Minn./Mayo) placed second (19:15.64) and Adelson third (20:16.98). Grimaldi was third in the 50 free (26.83), and senior Sammy Sidorakis (Baldwinsville, N.Y./C.W. Baker) claimed third in the 200-yard backstroke (2:25.75), 0.57 seconds shy of second.