Salinas, CA - Anchored by strong performances from seniors through freshmen, the UCSC Fighting Banana Slugs enjoyed victories on both the men's and women's sides in the 2012 Finis Collegiate Winter Invitational. Over the three day meet the women nearly doubled the score of the closest competition, amassing 3,130 total points while the men scored 2,852 more than 1000 points ahead of second place.
Senior Daniel Hurst and Junior transfer Josanne Van der Wilk helped pace the Slugs with Hurst finishing second in the 50 free (21.96) as well as first in the 100 backstroke (56.78) and fourth in the 100 fly (54.71) behind former olympic trials qualifiers. Van der Wilk started the meet on a great note for the women, placing first in Friday's first individual event, the women's 1650 free (17:55.88), as well as the 500 free (5:12.46)
Seniors Dana Macabales and Emi Yamaguchi also had great meets for the Slug women, Macabales Placed 1st in the 100 and 200 breaststrokes (1:11.15, 2:31.82) and 2nd in the 200 im (2:17.27) and in the 400 im (4:48.45) Yamaguchi Finished first in the 200 butterfly (2:12.44), 2nd in the 100 butterfly (1:01.37) and 3rd in the 400 im 4:49.05
In addition to the successful veteran leadership, UCSC's younger swimmers also found ways to contribute. Freshman Austin McNicholas continued his strong season with victories in the 1650 freestyle (16:27.28) as well as the 500 freestyle (4:46.22). Freshman Kelsey Warkentin also had a great meet, Winning the 100 freestyle (56.05) as well as sophomore Vlad Khrolov who also won the 100 Free (49.06) and Alison English who had second place finishes in the 200 (first in college division) (1:59.8), and 500 (5:14.56) freestyle.
In addition to performing well in individual events UCSC also won 3/5 relays on the women's side and 2/5 on the men's
-By Matt Nauman