Going into the last day of the Mid-American Conference Championships, Ball State Women’s Swim and Dive already obtained 15 top-10 times in various events. The Cardinals finished with 20 top-10 times after Saturday including the 200-yard freestyle relay.
The relay broke the Ball State school record with a time of 1:33.05 and finished seventh overall. Junior Peighton Gilbert started the race off with a 23.36 split time. At the end, Gilbert said she and her relay members were shocked.
“It’s funny because all season we had been going for the medley relay, and we didn’t really see how close we were in the freestyle relay,” Gilbert said. “When we got it, everybody was like, ‘You guys got the record.’ It was a surprise, and everyone was super happy.”
Another top-10 time came came from sophomore Audrey Shank in the 100-yard backstroke Thursday. She won the event in the consolation finals and improved her time to third in program history. Shank said she was glad to represent Ball State.
“When I finished in finals, I ended up dropping a tenth of a second,” Shank said. “I was more proud of representing our team and winning that for the team than my time because I knew that was a big step for where I had come.”
Saturday, the Cardinals had one individual swimmer and the 400-yard freestyle relay in the finals. Junior Sophie Bader finished 15th in the 200-yard butterfly in the prelims session and finished 16th overall in the finals.
The Cardinals’ 400-yard freestyle relay was seeded last out of eight teams. In the finals, they moved up and finished in seventh place, dropping 4.27 seconds off its time. That performance was good for third in program history.
The Cardinals finished last with 123 points, head coach J. Agnew was pleased with his team having so many times in the top 10.
“Our goal this whole year has been to race against ourselves, just keep moving forward,” Agnew said. “If you do that day in and day out, you’re going to move up the record board. You’re going to eventually find yourself competing for a championship.”