The Emory University Women's Swimming and Diving team was pushed to the brink but in the end it was the Eagles that once again came out on top as Emory captured its 10th consecutive and 12th overall NCAA Division III Swimming and Diving National Championship Saturday night at the Greensboro Aquatic Center in Greensboro, North Carolina.
In the closest championship meet in NCAA Division III history, the title race came down to the final two events of the evening. After Kenyon went ahead following the 200 Backstroke, the Eagles countered in the 200 Breaststroke, regaining the lead with strong finishes in both the championship and consolation finals including a fourth-place effort by senior Ashley Daniels before sealing the deal with a national runner-up performance in the 400 Freestyle Relay by seniors Fiona Muir, Meg Taylor, sophomore Lucy Daro and freshman Zoe Walker.
Emory, of Head Coach Jon Howell, posted 488 team points across the four-day meet with Kenyon finishing in second place at 479 points. The nine-point margin of victory is the narrowest margin of victory in the history of the NCAA Division III women's national meet, dating back to 1982.
The Eagles concluded the championship meet with five event national titles, 19 All-America honors and 17 All-America Honorable Mention certificates.
On the final day of competition, Muir closed out her impeccable career by adding another individual title to her ledger, taking gold in the 100 Freestyle with a time of 49.37. The win marked Fiona's third consecutive title in the event and the fifth overall for her at the 2019 Championships.
The Eagles added a pair of national runner-up performances as well on Saturday with the aforementioned 400 Free Relay turning in a time of 3:21.18 and senior Julia Durmer earning silver in the 1,650 Freestyle at 16:44.55.
To go along with Daniels' fourth-place finish in the 200 Breast (2:14.10), Taylor had a fourth place effort of her own in the 100 Freestyle, touching with a time of 50.53. Daro and freshman Gaige Elms were crowned All-Americans as well on day four with Daro placing seventh in the 100 Free (51.28) and Elms finishing eighth in the 200 Backstroke (2:03.91).
Freshman Edie Bates and sophomore Lara Gemar each had productive swims as well on Saturday with Bates winning the consolation final in the 200 Breast (9th, 2:17.84) and Gemar placing 13th in the event at 2:19.13.