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Virginia women's swimming and diving team wins third straight national title

The Virginia women’s swimming and diving program is now in very elite company.

The Cavaliers won their third consecutive national championship on Saturday night at the Allan Jones Aquatic Center in Knoxville, Tenn. UVa becomes just the fifth program in NCAA history to win three consecutive women’s swimming and diving national championships, joining Texas, Stanford, Georgia and Auburn.

And the Cavaliers earned the distinction in dominating fashion.

Virginia finished the NCAA Championships with 541.5 points, more than 100 points better than second-place Texas.(414.5 points). Stanford finished third with 333 points. Louisville (288) and N.C. State (263) rounded out the top five.

UVa swimmers won 11 races during the NCAA meet. The Cavaliers swept all five relay races, becoming just the fourth program in NCAA history to accomplish the feat, while winning six individual national championships.

Senior Kate Douglass led Virginia with three individual championships, winning the 200-yard IM, 100-yard butterfly and 200-yard breaststroke, all in NCAA, American and U.S. Open record times.

Douglass, who also won a bronze medal in the 200 IM at the Tokyo Olympics, won seven individual NCAA championships during her Cavalier career, sweeping all three events in 2022 and 2023. Douglass completed her college career with a victory in the 200-yard breast (2:01.29) on Saturday night.

UVa sophomore Gretchen Walsh won two individual championships during the NCAA Championships, touching the wall first in the 100-yard freestyle (45.61) and 100-yard backstroke (48.26).

Junior Alex Walsh swam to a national title in the 400-yard IM, finishing in a UVa and pool record time of 3:57.24. Walsh has won five NCAA individual titles during her college career.

She nearly added another title to her impressive resume. Walsh led the entire race in the 200-yard butterfly but was narrowly out-touched at the wall by Texas’ Emma Sticklen.

Douglass, Gretchen Walsh and Alex Walsh also played key roles in the Cavaliers’ five relay championships. All three swimmers competed in four different relays for Virginia.

Douglass and Gretchen Walsh both swam on the 200 medley, 200 free, 400 medley and 400 free relay teams, while Alex Walsh was part of the 200 medley, 800 free, 400 medley and 400 free relays.

Source: www.dailyprogress.com

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