CHARLOTTE, N.C. - After a four-day meet in which Carson-Newman went up against some of the best teams in the nation, both men's and women's programs came away with third-place finishes following Saturday's final swims at the Bluegrass Mountain Conference Championships at the Mecklenburg County Aquatic Center.
The Eagles men's side finished the meet with a total of 565 points behind Wingate at 718.50 and Queens taking the title at 976.50.
Coach Jordan Taylor's women earned 505 points with a mirror image finish with the Bulldogs runner-up with 761 points and the Royals winning the BMC Championships with 1,026 of their own.
Entering friday, C-N had come away with two conference champions in Caleb Howell and Andrei Ungur alongside a total of 27 All-BMC swims.
Cecilie Jensen added to that list as the lone women's swimmer to claim a BMC Conference Championship in 2019 after a swim of 2:03.20 in the 200-yard butterfly. The sophomore sits at thirteenth in the nation.
"For CJ, she's just a championship swimmer," Taylor said. "She went to NCAA's last year but she's struggled a little bit this year and their were obviously already high expectations. Me and her always knew once it became a big opportunity she would step up and she's someone who will step up again in a few weeks."
The total of three different conference champions on the week marks the post in the history of the program since its inception in 2013. C-N had four in Taylor's first year as head coach in 2015 but they were accomplished by just two swimmers.
Marcelo Figueiredo came away with an All-league swim with a fourth-place time in the 1650-yard freestyle at 15:46 on the dot.
Following Ungur's win in the 100-yard backstroke a day prior, the native of Romania earned a third-place finish in the 200-yard event with a time of 1:46.17, almost two full seconds faster than his prelim time that morning. He currently remains with the second-best time in program history and ninth in all of Division II swims this season.
Jon Lancaster rounded out the top-six for another All-BMC swim this week after a time of 1:49.17, also faster than his prelim swim.
Senior Lisa Postma grabbed an All-Conference time in the 100-yard freestyle with a No. 4 finish at 51.10, faster than her morning race.
Meredith Ginn earned her third individual All-BMC swim as a freshman after claiming the No. 6 spot in the 200-yard breaststroke at 2:19.75, also a time that was lower that the prelim race. The Ocala, Fla. native now sits second in program history following the race.
Howell added to his list of All-BMC swims with a third-place time in the 200-yard breaststroke at 1:59.52 for 16 team points. He currently has the seventh-best time in the nation thanks to a 1:58.79 time at the Tennessee Invitational earlier this season.
Joey Clemmer earned his second individual All-league time in the past two days after rounding out the top-six needed for the honor in the 200 breast. His time of 2:03.65 added to the list of Eagles who swam faster than the morning jaunt.
Matthew George continued a strong week for the freshman class with a swim of 1:49.48 in the 200-yard butterfly and an All-BMC honor with the sixth-place finish. Prior to the race, George already owned the school record in the event holding atop the category at 1:48.55.
C-N's foursome in the 400-yard freestyle relay grabbed a third-place finish and the All-BMC honor as Lisa Postma, Gabby Aguiar, Mary Northcutt, and Elly Culp swam at 3:26.43. The time has the group at No. 11 in Division II.
The men's foursome of Ungur, Nikola Tadic, Seth Hughes, and Chad Andoljsek earned the runner-up and All-BMC honor in the 400 free relay with a time of 2:58.92, nearly three seconds faster than their time earlier in the day. The time is currently No. 8 in the nation.
In total, Taylor's program earned 38 All-BMC plaudits over the four days and set themselves up for a prime opportunity to send its most swimmers to the NCAA Division II Swimming Championships.
"It was really one of our focuses this week to get as many relay's to NCAA's as possible," Taylor said. "We qualified those two relays tonight and a few others from this week. We were also looking to get some other individual qualifiers, just a couple different things we wanted to check list this week. We're probably looking at five guys and four girls individually that will go to NCAA's and that would be the most for us and we're obviously trying to take more if we can. All the positions we were in this weekj gave us that opportunity and took some pressure off us heading into next."
C-N and the rest of the nation will turn towards their Last Chance meet next weekend in hopes to improve on their nations times in a final push for a trip to nationals.