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Keene State Claims 13th Consecutive LEC Women’s Swimming & Diving Championship

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DARTMOUTH, Mass. – After totaling 535 points and winning eight of 16 individual events, the Keene State College women's swimming & diving team is the 2019 Little East Conference champion. This marks the 13th consecutive LEC title win for the Owls, and the 16th in program history.

Each of the 16 individual event champions also earned first-team all-conference honors, while the 16 runner-up finishers are named second-team all-conference.

BACKSTROKE: Eastern Connecticut junior Mollee Lasto (Orange, Conn.) repeated as the 100 backstroke champion after turning in a time of 1:01.39, which was just 0.09 second better than the second-place time of 1:01.48 turned in by UMass Dartmouth freshman Maddie Kovach (Oxford, Conn.). Kovach went on the win the 200 backstroke in 2:11.15, which was a half-second better than the runner-up time of 2:11.65 turned in by Keene State senior Katie Brandeberry (Phillipston, Mass.).

BREASTSTROKE: Keene State junior Madison Pechulis (Bristol, Conn.) won her second straight 100 breaststroke title after clocking in at 1:08.05, while Owl freshman Paige Carey (Lowell, Mass.) placed second in 1:10:31. Eastern Connecticut sophomore Megan Lasto (Orange, Conn.) was the winner in the 200 breaststroke (2:28.39), while Pechulis was second (2:32.05).

BUTTERFLY: Keene State junior Sophie Hayes (Ridgefield, Conn.) swept the butterfly events for the third consecutive year, winning the 100 in 59.42 and the 200 in 2:14.52. Keene State sophomore Kristyn Simoneau (Rindge, N.H.) was second in the 100 (1:00.53), while Westfield State senior Shannon Fitzsimmons (Andover, Mass.) was second in the 200 (2:19.62).

DIVING: Westfield State senior Monique Groux (Agawam, Mass.) and Plymouth State junior Casey Allaire (Mattapoisett, Mass.) split the diving events. Groux won on the 3-meter board (229.25) and placed second on the 1-meter board (236.40), while Allaire was victorious on the 1-meter board (239.05) and took second on the 3-meter board (227.25).

FREESTYLE: Megan Lasto and UMass Dartmouth junior Molly Harrington (Tewksbury, Mass.) tied for first in the 50 freestyle with identical times of 25.06 seconds, while Brandeberry (1:57.87) outdueled Hayes (2:03.54) in the 100 freestyle. Keene State sophomore Samantha Dickinson (Manchester, Conn.) was the winner in the 100 freestyle with her time of 54.14 seconds, while Simoneau took home second-place honors in 55.43 seconds. The 500 freestyle title went to Keene State junior Molly O'Connor (Glastonbury, Conn.) after she clocked in at 5:36.10, while Mollee Lasto was second in 5:42.43. UMass Dartmouth junior Sarah Murphy (Briantree, Mass.) was the winner in the 1,000 freestyle (11:21.15), while Eastern Connecticut sophomore Maggie Lasto (Orange, Conn.) was the runner-up (11:25.42).

INDIVIDUAL MEDLEY: Megan Lasto won her third individual gold medal on the day in the 400 IM after touching the wall in 4:45.78, while Maggie Lasto (Orange, Conn.) was runner-up with a time of 4:49.63. 

RELAYS: Keene State swept the relays. The 200 medley relay of Dickinson, Pechulis, Hayes and Simoneau won with a time of 1:51:55 to open the meet, while the 400 freestyle relay of junior Erin Morley (Pembroke, Mass.), senior Lauren Arsenault (Methuen, Mass.), O'Connor and Brandeberry won in 3:49.74 to close out the 2019 LEC Championships.

2019 LEC Swimming & Diving Team Standings
1. Keene State - 535   
2. UMass Dartmouth - 281.5
3. Westfield State - 234   
4. Eastern Connecticut - 210.5
5. Plymouth State - 129   
6. Western Connecticut - 88
7. Rhode Island College - 48