LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – Oklahoma Baptist men's swimming and diving took first and the women finished runner-up Saturday at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock Invitational.
The Bison won the event with 754 points, edging out Division I Incarnate Word in the final relay of the meet. Only three points separated the Lady Bison from first place, as OBU finished with 688 points. Incarnate Word won the meet for the women with a score of 691.
OBU women defeated all NCAA Division II opponents at the meet, including Great American Conference foe Henderson State, who finished fourth with 355 points.
"We're starting to come around, but we still have a long way to go," said Head Coach Dr. Samuel Freas. "The men stood tall today and picked up the win and the women were very close."
Three swimmers met "B" standards in four events to qualify for the NCAA Division II national championship, Otto Lehtonen qualified in the one-meter event, and Victoria Fonville set a new pool record at the Donaghey Student Aquatic Center.
Lehtonen took first place in one-meter diving while meeting the qualifying standard with a score of 325.90. Ryan Walker finished fourth in the event at 114.70.
Fonville met the "B" standard in the 50-yard freestyle for the second meet in a row with a first-place time of 23.33. That established a new pool record, besting the time of 23.35 posted by Drury's Wai Ting Yu in 2013. Fonville also met the "B" qualifying standard in the 100-yard freestyle in 52.00.
"It's an unusual pool, there were a lot of technical issues for Victoria to work out in order for her to post a better time," said Freas.
Lambert also met the "B" standard in the 50-yard freestyle, winning the event in 20.30. Brandon was second at 21.51 and JP Goyetche finished in 22.04 for fifth place.
Celina Marquez met the "B" standard in the 200-yard backstroke with a finals time of 2:03.26. Moss took third in the event at 2:08.69.
A Lady Bison team of Suzanne Afchain, Juliana Cifuentes, Marquez and Fonville finished second in the 200-yard medley relay with a finals time of 1:47.67. The men won the same event with a team of Felipe Ramirez Zapata, Fernando Morillas Ramos, Austin Saunders and David Lambert, finishing in 1:32.73.
Julie Day took second place in the 50-yard freestyle in 24.59 and Faith Moss was third with a time of 24.61.
Maddie Carson finished fifth in the 1000-yard freestyle in 11:12.67, and Alfredo Arrieche took first in the men's version of the event in 9:41.78.
Tammy Price was third in the 200-yard freestyle with a time of 1:58.96, and Alex Mundt also finished third in 1:43.93.
Marquez was second in the 100-yard backstroke in 57.55, followed by Moss in third at 59.01. The men also had two top-five finishes, led by Ramirez Zapata in 52.32. Andre Del Rio took fifth with a time of 53.95.
In the 100-yard breaststroke, Cifuentes took second place in 1:05.55 and Miriam Avila was third at 1:07.22. The Bison men dominated the event, taking four of the top-five places. Morillas Ramos won the 100-yard breaststroke in 56.87, followed by Lambert (58.95) in second, Chad Brandon (59.50) in fourth place and Josip Miscovic (59.87) in fifth.
Kristijan Stunkovic finished runner-up in the men's 200-yard butterfly with a finals time of 1:54.06.
Lambert won the men's 100-yard freestyle with a finals time of 45.93 and Del Rio took second in 46.38.
OBU finished first and second in the men's 200-yard backstroke. Ramirez Zapata won with a time of 1:53.19 and Mundt was runner-up in 1:54.14.
Three Lady Bison had top-five finishes in the 200-yard breaststroke. Cifuentes (2:23.55) was second, Avila (2:28.50) took third and Leslie White (2:29.80) finished in fourth place. Morillas Ramos won the men's event in 2:05.02 and Thomas Peterson finished in fifth place in 2:14.27.
Arrieche finished the 500-yard freestyle in 4:44.44 for second place and Stunkovic was fifth in 4:51.87.
In the women's 100-yard butterfly, Marquez was second with a time of 57.59 and Fonville touched third in 59.63. OBU dominated the men's 100-yard butterfly, sweeping the top three spots. Ramirez Zapata (51.20) placed first, Saunders (51.40) finished second and Del Rio (51.56) captured third place.
Cifuentes won the women's 200-yard individual medley with a finals time of 2:07.58. Mundt swam the men's 200-yard IM in 1:57.43 for third place and Morillas Ramos took fourth in 1:57.83.
A team of Avila, Price, Moss and Grace Clayton claimed second place in the 200-yard freestyle relay with a time of 1:38.42. The men's team of Del Rio, Brandon, Goyetche and Daniel Brown took first place in the 200-yard freestyle relay in 1:24.30.
For the women's one-meter diving, Cassidy Wright took third place with a score of 247.05 and Genesis Veliz was fourth after scoring 224.20. In three-meter diving, Veliz took fourth at 221.10 and Wright scored 219.75 points to claim fourth place.
Lehtonen was runner-up in the three-meter event at 266.00 and Walker finished fourth with a finals score of 208.65.
Both teams will return to the pool on Oct. 28 for the Halloween Invitational in Edmond.