Women Down D&E in "Battle of the Hills," Men Take Second

Women Down D&E in "Battle of the Hills," Men Take Second

BUCKHANNON -- West Virginia Wesleyan's swim teams split with neighboring Davis & Elkins this weekend in the annual "Battle of the Hills."

Wesleyan's women won a hard-fought 212-179 decision over the Senators, while D&E captured the win on the men's side 248-143. 

It was the first time in the pool for a competitive meet for both the men and the women after a five-week holiday break.

"We had a strong meet after a really tough week of training," remarked Wesleyan head coach April Gitzen. "Every single student-athlete on this team swam every race with everything they could give. It was a hard fought meet. We have some who have been battling through some illness and injuries, but kept fighting with what they could."

Wesleyan's women scored the victory by collecting four relay wins and five individual races.

Kimmy Culver was the star of the individual wins, taking the 200-fly (2:25.55), the 400-IM (5:10.00) and the 100-fly (1:02.51).

Camilla Brizzi took the 100-free (56.80) while Ashton Cole gave the team a distance win by taking the 500-free (5:28.05).

The Lady Bobcat relay dominance began with the 400-medley relay team of Kylee Savage, Justine Bledsoe, Emily Kroll and Marylee Gowdy that touched the wall first in 4:21.70.

Three more units raced to wins for the Orange and Black; the 200-free relay team of Gowdy, Brizzi, Alyssa Morris and Chelsea Jesso (1:44.06), the 200-medley relay team of Cole, Bledsoe, Morris, and Theresa Burgess (1:58.39) and the 400-free relay team of Brizzi, Jesso, Kroll and Gowdy (3:56.67).

Wesleyan's men won three individual races and one relay.

Julian Morassi led the Bobcat attack by taking wins in the 200-fly (2:02.99) and the 200-free (1:46.61).

Dominik Schopper won the 100-breast in 1:00.30.

Coach Gitzen's Bobcats closed the day, taking the 400-free relay with the unit of Dan Williams, Scott Heckathorn, Kiernan McCarthy and Logan Knoyer. Their winning time was 3:24.45.

"As a coach, I am honored to coach these young individuals because every day they make me proud," Gitzen said. "They support each other no matter what the outcome is, and they have fun. At the end of the day, their hearts were the biggest ones out there."

Wesleyan returns to action next week, traveling to face league rival Fairmont State on Saturday. This will be their last competition before the confefence championships on Feb. 9-11.

"It was the last home meet for our senior class and it was a remarkable one," Gitzen said. "Our seniors that are graduating are a special group of young ladies who are irreplaceable and truly fine young women."

Wesleyan's young men's team does not have any seniors on the roster.


(Photo courtesy of Peter Galarneau Jr.)