Simkovic Gets NCAA Cut On Second Day Of MPSF Championships

Oliver Simkovic - Photo by Becca Wyant

Monterey Park, Calif. – Junior Oliver Simkovic's NCAA qualifying time in the men's 200 IM highlighted a solid night for Pacific's swimming teams at the 2013 Mountain Pacific Sports Federation Championships Thursday at East Los Angeles College.

After the second day of the meet, the Tigers' men's team sits eighth with 86 points while Pacific's women's squad ranks seventh with 95 points.

"Overall, I thought tonight was a good night," head coach Peter Richardson said. "Oliver swam really well, and both of his times were better than last year. Other swimmers that stood out with impressive performances were Allie Vetterlein, Hanaya Brasali and Brandon Presswood. I thought all three really brought it tonight and attacked their swims."

Simkovic had locked up his NCAA cut earlier at the preliminary session, finishing with a time of 1:48.23 to qualify for the night's championship final. He was slightly slower in his second race, clocking in at 1:48.47, which was also fast enough to qualify for the NCAA Championships. 

The Tigers' other top-eight finish came courtesy of junior Hayley Shillington in the 500 Free. She touched the wall at 4:52.97 in her preliminary swim to finish second, and her time of 4:56.57 was good for seventh in the championship final. 

Vetterlein placed 12th in the women's 200 IM, finishing with a time of 2:03.76, her fastest mark of the season. Right behind her was freshman Cristina Mardones, who's time of 2:03.91 was good for 13th.

Presswood cut nearly six seconds off his best time in the 500 Free, stopping the clock at 4:31.05 to place 18th. Junior Matt Stuhr led the Tigers in the mid-distance race, taking 15th with a time of 4:33.44.

Joining Simkovic in the 200 IM night swims was Brasali, who came in 19th with a time of 1:52.61, his best time of the year by almost two seconds.

Both of Pacific's 'A' teams finished eighth in the 200 Free Relay as the men clocked in at 1:21.67 while the women finished with a time of 1:35.84.

"Looking at the meet program, I felt today was going to be our weakest day," Richardson continued. "Tomorrow looks to be our best day. We're really looking forward to seeing what we can bring the rest of the weekend."

The meet continues tomorrow with preliminary swims beginning at 10 a.m.

Women's 200 Free Relay – Hawai'i 'A' (Cote, Stover, Mustelin, Alkhaldi), 1:30.39 … 8. Pacific 'A' (Shahaff, Vetterlein, Mardones, McGowan), 1:35.84

Men's 200 Free Relay – 1. BYU 'A' (Fletcher, Sorenson, Beaman, Murray), 1:18.30 … 8. Pacific 'A' (Moore, Fleming, Stuhr, Wilson), 1:21.67

Women's 500 Free – 1. Samantha Shellem, UC Davis, 4:45.60 … 7. Hayley Shillington, 4:56.57 … 20. Lydia Schramm, 5:04.29 … 21. Jenna Chaplin, 5:04.44

Men's 500 Free – 1. Mitchell Huxold, CSU Bakersfield, 4:21.50 … 15. Matt Stuhr, 4:33.44 … 18. Brandon Presswood, 4:31.05 … 21. Brandon Chandler, 4:33.34

Women's 200 IM – 1. Sophia Yamauchi, UC Santa Barbara, 1:58.98 … 12. Allie Vetterlein, 2:03.76 … 13. Cristina Mardones, 2:03.91

Men's 200 IM – 1. Adam Kalms, Wyoming, 1:46.10 … 5. Oliver Simkovic, 1:48.47 … 19. Hanaya Brasali, 1:52.61

Women's 50 Free – 1. Jasmine Alkhaldi, Hawai'i, 22.79 … 24. Mallory McGowan, 24.16

Men's 50 Free – 1. Dillon Virva, UNLV, 19.92 … 20. Casey Fleming, 20.74