By Robert McKinney, Assistant Athletics Director, Communications
SALEM, Ore. -- Swimmers for Willamette University set a total of six school records during the 2016-17 season. All of the new records were attained at the 2017 NWC Swimming Championships at the Weyerhaeuser King County Aquatic Center in Federal Way, Washington.
Members of the WU women's team set three records. Cassie Tallman (Jr., Seattle, WA/Roosevelt HS) set new top marks in the 200-yard breaststroke and the 200-yard individual medley. She set both records in the championship finals, as she took second place by just 0.01 in the 200 breaststroke in 2:23.16 and placed third in the 200 I.M. with a time of 2:10.25.
Tallman broke her own record in the 200-yard breaststroke. Her old mark of 2:25.58, was lowered by Tallman to 2:24.36 during the preliminary heats at this year's NWC Championships. She lowered the record even more in the final. Tallman's time in the prelims also was surpassed by Ashlyn Witherwax (Jr., Honolulu, HI/Punahou School), who was timed at 2:24.35 in the final while taking third place.
In the 200 I.M., Tallman also broke her own school record. The previous top time of 2:10.32 wes registered by Tallman at the 2015 NWC Championships.
Ashlyn Witherwax (Jr., Honolulu, HI/Punahou School) set a new record in the 100-yard breaststroke when she won the consolation final at this year's championships in 1:06.94. Tallman owned the old record of 1:07.11, set last year.
The Bearcat men's team also established three records. Two of the men's records were set by Mark Yuvienco (Jr., San Jose, CA/Bellarmine College Prep) in the 200-yard butterfly and the 200-yard individual medley.
Yuvienco was timed at 1:53.46 in the championship final of the 200 butterfly. Yuvienco set the previous record of 1:53.86 in 2015, but lowered the top mark to 1:53.60 in this year's prelims.
The new record in the 200 I.M. was set by Yuvienco at 1:56.29 in the championship final. Derek Ludwig (Fr., Moraga, CA/Campolindo HS) also broke the existing record with a time of 1:56.87 in the prelims. The previous record of 1:57.06 was achieved by Tim Roth in 1993.
Willamette's men also set a record in the 400-yard medley relay on the first night of the three-day championship meet. The Bearcats were timed at 3:31.35 while taking fifth place in the relay and finishing just 0.58 out of fourth. Swimming on the relay unit were Jason Bayang (Sr., Wahiawa, HI/Hoala School), Alika Masei (Sr., Salem, OR/West Salem HS), Yuvienco and Derek Ludwig (Fr., Moraga, CA/Campolindo HS).
The previous top time for Willamette in the men's 400 medley relay was 3:33.93, set by Claude Grove, Brian Clocksin, Gabe Duus and Matt Boltz in 1992.