S&D: Somerville swims at NCAAs

Jamie Augustinsky

The swimming and diving season ended this past weekend with the women’s NCAA championships, which ran from March 8-10 at University of Minnesota.

Senior Jenny Somerville represented Villanova, swimming in both the 500-meter and the 1,650-meter freestyles. This was her second year swimming in the 500-meter freestyle at the NCAA championships and her third year swimming in the 1,650-meter freestyle. Last year, she finished 40th in the 500-meter event, and this year, being seeded 39th out of the 67 qualifiers, she tied for 38th place.

In 2005, Somerville finished 29th in the 1,650-meter free, and last year she finished 23rd in the event. This year, after having won her fourth consecutive Big East title in the event, Somerville was seeded 31st out of 43 swimmers and swam a lifetime-best time of 16:26.41 for a 22nd place finish. Her finishing time was nearly two seconds better than her NCAA qualifying time and nearly seven seconds faster than her time in the NCAA championships last year.

Since all of the qualifying times were much faster this year, it was difficult to even qualify for the events. This made Somerville even more excited about her accomplishment.

“A lot of times, particularly my event, the mile, were a lot faster this year, so it was exciting to finish up in 22nd place,” she said.

Of her last swim representing the Wildcats, she said, “My last NCAA championships were a great experience. I was really excited that I got to end my swimming career at the NCAAs and also with a lifetime-best swim in the 1,650 freestyle. It was great to represent Villanova swimming one more time at a national meet.”