Guffey and Masei Reach Championship Finals on Second Day of NWC Meet

Nine Bearcats Advance to Consolation Finals

By Robert McKinney, Athletics Communications Director, (503) 370-6110

FEDERAL WAY, WASH. -- The preliminary swims on the second day of the 2014 Northwest Conference Swimming Championships on Saturday, Feb. 15 went very well for the Bearcats, as Alex Guffey (So., Seattle, WA/Roosevelt HS) and Alika Masei (Fr., Salem, OR/West Salem HS) advanced to the championship finals and nine other Willamette University swimmers reached the consolation finals.

A total of eight swimmers moved on to the championship finals in each event held on Saturday, with the finals set for later tonight. An additional eight swimmers advanced to the consolation finals in each event. The NWC Swimming Championships will conclude on Sunday, Feb. 16.

Guffey led the way for Willamette in Saturday's prelims by tying for the second-fastest time in the men's 200-yard freestyle. He recorded a time of 1:43.88, which matched the time earned by Mitchell Beck of Whitworth University. Karl Mering from Whitman achieved the top time of the prelims at 1:42.32.

Masei registered the fourth-best time of the men's 100-yard backstroke prelims, as he reached the finish in 52.66 seconds. Wesley Walton from Whitworth topped the field in the prelims with a meet-record and NCAA "B" qualifying time of 50.98 seconds.

Josh Baumgarner (Fr., Walla Walla, WA/Walla Walla HS), Dan Aki (Fr., Union City, CA/James Logan HS) and Zander Le Bel (Jr., Dallas, TX/Richardson HS) all reached the consolation finals in the men's 400-yard individual medley. Baumgartner was ninth in the prelims at 4:25.69, while Aki earned a time of 4:30.16 and Le Bel was clocked at 4:34.96.

Aki also made the consolation finals in the men's 100-yard butterfly. His time was 54.07 seconds, as he placed 13th among all swimmers in the preliminary heats.

Other Bearcats reaching the consolation finals for the men's team were Andrew Lum (So., Honolulu, HI/Punahou School) in the men's 100-yard butterfly (54.68 for 14th in prelims) and Chris Whitehead (Sr., Sherwood, OR/Sherwood HS) in the men's 100-yard breaststroke (1:03.49 for 16th in prelims).

Qualifying for the consolation finals for the WU women's team were Malia Santos (So., Kailua-Kona, HI/Kealakehe HS) in the women's 100-yard butterfly (1:00.21 for 9th in prelims), Hope Nelson (Jr., Providence, RI/South Kingstown HS) in the women's 200-yard freestyle (2:03.32 for 16th in prelims) and Erin Parkinson (Sr., Everson, WA/Ferndale HS) in the women's 100-yard breaststroke (1:09.85 for 10th in prelims), and Michaela Zuber (So., Sacramento, CA/Sheldon HS) in the women's 100-yard backstroke (1:02.01 for 16th in prelims).

RESULTS FROM PRELIMS

2014 Northwest Conference
Swimming Championships
At Federal Way, Wash.
Feb. 14-16, 2014

2nd Day Prelims

Alex Guffey tied for the second-fastest time in the prelims of the 200-yard freestyle, as he completed the race in 1:43.88.

Alex Guffey tied for the second-fastest time in the prelims of the 200-yard freestyle, as he completed the race in 1:43.88.