Toh’s School Record Paces Lobos on Day Two
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MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. — It might have been -6 degrees Fahrenheit when the Lobo swimming and diving team left their hotel for the Jean K. Freeman Natatorium for day two of the Mountain West Championships, but nothing was going to cool down a red-hot Nicholle Toh.
The Lobo freshman swam a school record 2:02.20 in the 200-yard individual medley to pace New Mexico on the second of four days in the Mountain West Championships. While Toh broke UNM’s record, she just missed getting into the A-Finals. Overall, UNM dropped one slot in the standings to eighth place after two days. UNM trails seventh-place Colorado State by 21.5 points. San Diego State leads through two days with 634 points, nearly 200 more than second-place Nevada.
Toh’s IM was the highlight of the day for UNM, although Natasha Dark in the 3-meter dive put on a show of her own. Twice Dark came back from being low in the standings to finish 10th overall. Dark was down in the 20s through the first few dives, but then hit her stride, and she moved into 15th place, gaining her a place in the consolation finals round.
There she again started slow, and after two dives she sat in eighth in the round and 16th overall. At that point she caught fire, hitting 50.4 on her final three dives after recording a 49.95 on her third. That catapulted her all the way up to 10th place overall.
UNM nearly had two others in the consolation round as both Jocelyn Gallais and Daphne Scheck finished 17th and 18th respectively, with Sara Rogers not far behind in 20th and Hannah Tiendas in 24th. Dark scored 17 points for UNM, Gallais nine, Scheck eight, Rogers five and Tiendas one.
— Lobo Swim and Dive (@UNMLoboSwimDive) February 21, 2020
The previous UNM record for the 200-yard individual medley was set in 2017 by Emily McGill, who turned in a mark of 2:02.71. Toh would best that mark twice on the day. In the preliminaries, she swam her record 2:02.20 to just miss the A-Finals, coming in 10th overall. That put her in the B-Finals with teammate Mary Aoki. In the B-Finals, Toh entered 10th and Aoki 14th, and Toh broke McGill’s mark again, but just missed her newly established one. Toh finished third in the race and 11th overall with a time of 2:20.25. Aoki moved up one spot with a time of 2:03.26, giving her 14 points and Nicholle’s 16.
In the 500-yard freestyle, UNM qualified one into the B-Finals with Josie Carpenter qualifying 11th and finishing 15th overall, scoring 12 points. UNM’s lone C-Finals qualifier was Bryndis Bolladottir, who did a great job moving from 24th to 21st, scoring 4 points.
In the 50-yard free, Hedda Øritsland was UNM’s lone scorer, coming in 16th place for 11 points. In the 400-yard medley relay, the Lobo quartet of Brenna Wiercinski, Asami Terada, Øritsland and Olivia Bishop finished ninth, scoring 40 points.
Action continues Friday at 10 a.m. Mountain Time with the first of five preliminaries. The evening session will have the 200-yard relay at 5:30 p.m. Mountain Time. Individual races will start at 5:50 p.m. Mountain Time with the 400-yard individual medley, with the 100-yard butterfly, the 200-yard freestyle, the 100-yard breaststroke and the 100-yard backstroke to follow.
NOTES: Lobo underclassmen (freshman and sophomores) have accounted for 160 of UNM’s 253 points, 63.2% … Toh leads the team with 36 points, including 20 points in relays.
Lobo Championship Scoring (Relay points split evenly between all four swimmers)
Nicholle Toh 36, Natasha Dark 33, Hedda Øritsland 31, Brenna Wiercinski 20, Asami Terada 20, Olivia Bishop 20, Jocelyn Gallais 16, Hannah Tiendas 15, Mari Aoki, 14, Bryndis Bolladottir 14, Josie Carpenter 12, Camila Batista 10, Daphne Scheck 7, Sara Rogers 5,