Eight Tigers Qualify for NCAA Championships
COLUMBIA - Eight members of the University of Missouri swimming and diving team qualified for the 2012 NCAA Championships, held March 15-17 in Auburn, Alabama. Additionally, one more Tiger qualified as a relay alternate. Dominique Bouchard, Cassie Cunningham, Emily Doucette, Amanda Masters, Lisa Nathanson and Shara Stafford made the cut in the pool while Christina Gailey and Jordan Morcom qualified in diving. Emy DiBenigno is a relay alternate.
Gailey will compete in all three diving events while Morcom with compete in the 1 and 3 meter dives at the NCAA Championships. Both divers are making their second trip to the Championships.
In the pool, Stafford, the 2012 Big 12 Champion in the 100 and 200 free, qualified for a team high three individual races, the 50, 100 and 200 frees. The senior posted top-10 national times in all three events this season: sixth-best time in the 100 free, eighth-best time in the 200 free and ninth-best time in the 50 free.
Bouchard, who finished second in the 200 back at least year's NCAA Championships, will swim in the 100 and 200 back again this season. The junior swam the fourth-fastest 200 back in the nation this season. She will be joined in the 100 back by Cunningham, who posted the 21st best time this year in the 100 back.
The 200 free relay team of Stafford, Cunningham, Doucette and Nathanson, who claimed Mizzou's first ever relay title at the Big 12 Championships with the third-fastest time in the country this year, look to make some noise nationally in the event.
Missouri's 200 medley relay team of Cunningham, Masters, Stafford and Doucette also qualified. The team set a new team record in the event at the Big 12 Championships.