First-year student Lily Klinginsmith nabs 100 butterfly and 100 freestyle titles and the 400 freestyle relay team takes crown, too
Tufts took three titles at the 2023 NCAA Division III Women’s Swimming & Diving Championships, as first-year Lily Klinginsmith, A26, captured the 100 butterfly and the 100 freestyle and the Jumbo 400 freestyle relay team closed the meet with a victory.
Klinginsmith’s national championship efforts began with a win in the 100 butterfly on March 16. That morning, she was second in the preliminaries with a time of 54.29. In the final, Klinginsmith built a small lead through 50 yards and then powered her way to the win with a 53.65 time.
“It’s crazy,” Klinginsmith said after her victory. “It’s definitely not something I expected. It took a lot of hard work behind the scenes, but I trusted the hard work and it paid off.”
She was third in the 100 freestyle preliminaries with a 50.14 time. In the final on March 18, though, she overcame a slight deficit at 50 yards to roar to the win in a school-record 49.28 finish, breaking her own record.
In the 400 free relay, the Jumbos left the national meet with something to remember as they edged NYU to win the title with a 3:21.66 school-record, ahead of the 3:21.71 mark for the runners-up.
The Jumbo relay team was senior Claire Brennan, A23, senior Katelin Isakoff, A23, junior Jillian Cudney, A24, and Klinginsmith. The record broken (3:22.46) was from last year’s NESCAC meet with Brennan, Cudney, and Isakoff as part of the foursome.
The Jumbos were also the national runner-up in the 200 freestyle relay. The foursome of Elle Morse, A23, Cudney, Klinginsmith, and Katelin Ulmer, A23, finished with a 1:31.97 time, just 0.35 off the winning pace set by Emory University. The four Tufts swimmers all earned All-American awards.
The 800 freestyle relay team was also the national runner-up. The Jumbos finished with a 7:22.85 time in the race, behind national champion Denison’s 7:16.35 finish. The Jumbo foursome was Klinginsmith, senior Chloe Deveney, A23, Isakoff, and Brennan
Tufts scored 85 team points the last day of competition, to finish at 296.5 for the meet. Head coach Adam Hoyt’s Jumbos were sixth overall in the NCAA scoring, matching the program’s best-ever finish from the 1981-82 season.
With the three overall titles at the meet, Tufts women swimmers have now won five national championships at the last two NCAA meets. This includes Brennan’s victory in the 200 freestyle and an 800 freestyle relay title last year. Tufts women’s student-athletes in all sports have now won 10 NCAA titles since March 2022.