WORCESTER, Mass.—On a night that was highlighted by first-year Kevin Luu's (Malden, Mass.) performance in the 50-yard backstroke, the Babson College men's and women's swimming & diving teams picked up 273 points on the second day of competition at WPI's Gompei Invitational on Saturday.
The Beavers are currently in 12th place in the combined team score event with 494 points after 34 events. The host Engineers hold a slim 26.5-point lead over second-place Rowan, while Bryant, Stevens and Bentley round out the top five.
The top performance of the day belonged to Luu, who posted the third fastest qualifying time (24.91) in the 50-yard backstroke prelims, and then finished second in the A final with a time of 24.83. His result was the second fastest in school history behind Purin Waranimman '15, who broke Phillippe Noelting's '09 record with a time of 24.46 at the 2015 NEWMAC Championships.
In addition to Luu's strong performance, first-year Taras Polakoff (Orange County, Calif.) qualified for the A final in the 50 backstroke and came in eighth overall with a time of 26.10, while junior Adam Kershner (Scottsdale, Ariz.) qualified for the B final with a time of 29:16 and 20th overall. The Beavers also had three swimmers qualify for the B final in the 100-yard breaststroke, led by sophomore Alex Damiecki's (Centerville, Mass.) victory with a time of 1:00.20. First-year Lachlan Dibbayawan (Bangkok, Thailand) placed eighth with a time of 1:02.14, while junior Kenneth Mun (Hacienda Heights, Calif.) placed 10th with a time of 1:02.63.
Sophomore Jack Lucero (Huntington Beach, Calif.) qualified for the A final in the 400-yard individual medley and came in 10th overall with a time of 4:18.93. He also qualified for the B final in the 200-yard freestyle and finished 19th overall with a time of 1:49.85.
Luu, who also came in third in the C final of the 100 backstroke, teamed with Damiecki, Dibbayawan and senior Mitchell Posk (Boynton Beach, Fla.) to help the Green and White place 14th in the 200 free relay and 16th in the 400 medley relay.
The Babson women were led by the quartet of sophomore Tirza Rentovich (Harrisburg, Pa.) and first-years Jordan Mailly (Glastonbury, Conn.), Celine Nie (Irvine, Calif.) and Nataliya Gowan (San Antonio, Texas), who came in 24th in the 400-yard medley relay (4:19.97) and 25th in the 200-yard freestyle relay (1:45.37). Mailly and Gowan also posted their top times of the year in 200 free prelims, touching the wall in 2:02.89 and 2:04.71, respectively.
Gowan recorded a season-best time of 1:06.56 in the 100 backstroke, Nie finished with a time of 1:05.78 in the 100 backstroke prelims, and Rentovich posted her top time of the year (1:13.53) in the 100 breaststroke trials. First-years Luna Zhang (Auburndale, Mass.) and Julia Ferrara (Coto de Caza, Calif.) also touched the wall separated by less than a second in the 100 breaststroke.