The senior tandem of Alicia Caldwell and Jaecey Parham both posted convincing individual wins with some of the best marks in school history to pace the Rice swim team on the second day of action at the annual Spartan Invitational Saturday evening in Clearwater, Fla.
Parham led a 1-2-4 Rice finish in the 200-yard individual medley with a time of 1:59.25 that is not only a personal best, but the second-fastest mark in Rice history. Senior Kaitlyn Swinney, the school record holder in the 400-IM, showed her 200-IM speed with a second place time of 2:00.16 that is now the fourth-fastest by an Owl. Freshman Brittany Bui was fourth overall (2:04.77), but the team scoring didn’t stop there. The Rice trio of Nicole Limberg (2:03.83), Hanna Huston (2:04.88) and Lindsay Mathys (2:06.11) claimed the top three spots in the event’s consolation final.
The Blue & Gray had similar success in the 500-free. Caldwell raced to victory with a new personal best of 4:44.60, the third-fastest mark in school history. Swinney was third overall (4:54.90) while the Owl trio of Ellery Parish (4:50.58), Sarah Nowaski (4:56.33) and Kelsey Evans (4:56.93) were the top three finishers in the ‘B’ final.
Senior sprinter Lauren Rhodes won the consolation final of the 50-free to take ninth overall, but her time of 23.11 was the fastest of any competitor in the evening session. Caldwell (23.42), Kate Nezelek (23.64) and Marie-Claire Schillinger (23.99) likewise had big improvements in moving from prelims to finals.
The Owls foursome of Swinney, Schillinger, Bui and Caldwell combined for a winning time of 3:41.95 in the 400-medley relay to close out Day 2. There are six events on the meet schedule for both Sunday and Monday. Rice is the No. 28 ranked team in the country according to CollegeSwimming.com.