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March 16, 2012
AUBURN, Ala. - The Penn State women's swimming team kicked off a solid first day at the NCAA Championships, hosted by Auburn. Penn State currently sits 19th overall in the team standings and qualified for the finals in three events including the 200 freestyle relay, the 400 medley relay and the 50 freestyle.
In the 200 freestyle relay preliminaries, junior Paige Whitmire, senior Samantha Palser, senior Katie Pulos and senior Erin Thomas squeaked into the finals with a time of 1:29.85. The time was a season best for Penn State in that relay event. The group earned a 15th place overall finish in the finals and clocked in at 1:30.54.
In the 400 medley relay preliminaries, Whitmire, junior Merritt Krawczyk, sophomore Mackenzie Powers and Palser qualified for the finals, earning a time of 3:35.11. The group had an even better performance in the evening finals, earning a 13th place finish with a time of 3:33.89. The finals time is the second fastest in school history.
In the 200 IM preliminaries, Krawczyk earned a time of 1:57.87, falling just .03 seconds of qualifying for the finals. Sophomore Chelsea Weedman finished two spots behind Krawczyk, posting a mark of 1:58.13 in the prelims. That time was a lifetime best for Weedman.
In the 50 freestyle preliminaries, Whitmire qualified for the finals and tied her best time of the season, clocking in at 22.33 seconds. Palser fell just short of qualifying, but beat her season-best time, as she finished in 22.41 seconds. Also beating her season-best time in the prelims was Pulos, who finished at 23.30 seconds. Whitmire went on to finish 16th overall in the finals, earning a time of 22.72 second.
Penn State will be back in action tomorrow. Check back to GoPSUsports.com for continued updates throughout the NCAA Championships.