The Central Connecticut swimming and diving team fell to the Wagner Seahawks by a final score of 177.5-122.5 on Saturday in their final dual-meet before the NEC Championships on Feb. 19-22. Senior Kristina Gulia broke two pool records at the meet in the 100 and 200 yard breaststroke events in Staten Island, NY.
Saturday's loss to the NEC preseason favorite Seahawk squad marks the first in nine seasons.
The Blue Devils kicked off the meet with a second-place finish in the 200 medley relay. The squad, consisting of Gulia, classmates Kellen Power and Erin Massey, along with freshman Stephanie Czulewicz, touched the wall in 1:52.03.
Central tallied six gold-medal performances on the day, including two from Gulia. She raced a time of 1:06.60 in the 100 breaststroke and finished the 200 breaststroke in 2:23.77.
In both events, Gulia was followed by sophomore Alaina Papiro who finished fourth. She registered times of 1:09.84 and 2:31.73 in the 100 and 200 breaststroke events, respectively.
The second victory of the day, following Gulia's 100 breaststroke win, came from freshman Christine Rasile, who earned the gold medal in the 50 freestyle. She touched the wall in 24.51 seconds and was followed by Massey, who tied for fourth, in a season-best time of 25.69.
Central then took to the 1-meter board to clinch a third gold-medal, this time from sophomore and five-time NEC Diver of the Week Jessica Goldman. Goldman posted a score of 250.87 in the event to claim the victory and was followed by junior Kaitlyn Dwyer (4th, 188.47) and sophomore Kaitlyn Beaver (5th, 162.15).
From three meters, Goldman was again the highest-scoring Blue Devil, tallying 223.20 points. She claimed second and preceded Dwyer (4th, 188.40) and Beaver (5th, 187.20).
In the 100 butterfly, Power tallied another gold for CCSU, registering a time of 59.48. Following in fifth was freshman Janel Crespo, who touched the wall in a season-best time of 1:02.36.
Rasile also earned two second-place performances, first in the 200 freestyle where she touched in 1:55.88 and again in the 100 free, finishing in 52.72. Rasile led CCSU in a two-three finish in the 100 free that included Power claiming the bronze in 55.46.
CCSU earned another two-three finish in the 100 back. Czulewicz claimed the silver medal with her season-best time of 1:01.43 and was followed by junior Kaylin Sylvester in 1:04.60.
In the 200 butterfly, freshman Sabree Thomas was the first Blue Devil to touch the wall, earning the silver and clocking a time of 2:12.83. She was followed by Crespo in third who registered a season-best time of 2:13.39.
Other notable performances for CCSU include bronze medals in the 1,000 freestyle and the 200 backstroke. Senior Kasey Chilton finished third in the 1,000 free, shattering her previous season-best time in the event (10:53.37) by just under ten seconds. She touched the wall in 10:43.39 on Saturday.
In the 200 backstroke, Czulewicz registered a time of 2:12.54 to claim bronze.
Central started and ended the day's competition with solid relay performances. The Blue Devils claimed the victory in the 400 yard freestyle relay with a time of 3:39.58. The team was made up of Power, Novak, Massey and Rasile.
The Blue Devils have approximately two and a half weeks to prepare for the 2014 Northeast Conference Championships. This year's competition, scheduled for Feb. 19 through Feb. 22, will beheld at MIT in Boston, MA.