ORANGE, Calif. – After the best finish in program history at the 2018 SCIAC Championships, the Chapman University men's and women's swim teams enter the 2019 championships with hopes for an even higher finish in the conference standings.
A couple of newcomers have been leading the way for the men's squad this season. Freshman William Cho holds the top times for the Panthers in the 100 breast, 100 fly and the 200 fly. The rookie holds the ninth-best time in the SCIAC in the 100 fly and the eighth-best time in the 200 fly and will look to earn a spot in the finals in both events.
Freshman Omar Insignares also looks to land a spot in the finals in the 200 fly with the 17th-best time in the SCIAC. Freshman Brandon Leu burst onto the scene early in the season and currently holds the 14th-best time in the 100 fly less than half a second behind Cho. Leu also looks to be a top finisher in the 200 IM as he currently holds the 17th-best time.
Sophomore Josh Modglin holds some of the best times in the SCIAC in both the 100 and 200 back. With the fifth-best time in the conference in the 200 back, Modglin has an excellent chance of making the podium for just the second time in program history.
Sophomore Darren Wong sits just over a second behind Modglin in the 100 back with the 17th-best time in the SCIAC. Junior Chase Mitchell holds the 10th-best time in the 200 fly just 31 tenths of a second behind Cho, while junior Connor Broughton has the 16th-fastest time in the 400 IM.
The Chapman women's swim team looks to reach the podium in both the 800 free relay and the 200 medley relay as they hold the fastest times in the SCIAC in both events.
Sophomore Jailey Reeves has a shot at the finals in both the 100 and 200 breast as she holds the 10th-best time in the 100 and the 13th-best time in the 200 event. Freshman Nancy Zhu has the ninth-fastest time in the SCIAC in the 400 IM and the 14th-fastest time in the 200 IM. She is joined in the top-18 by fellow freshman Avery Tamusaitis, who has the 15th-best time in the 400 IM and the 16th-best time in the 200 IM.
A few veterans find themselves in contention for the finals this weekend. Senior Kristina Fong has the 13th-fastest time in the SCIAC in the 100 back, while junior Molly Davis has the 16th-best time in the 200 free and junior Katharine Buliga holds the 12th-fastest time in the 1650 free. Sophomore Hanna Heiss looks to improve her 13th-fastest time in the 200 back to earn a spot in the finals.
The Panthers hop in the pool tonight for the first couple of relay races and wrap up the SCIAC Championships on Sunday, Feb. 24 in Commerce, Calif.
by Katie Bell
Sports Information Assistant