Updated: May 17, 2021
Swimmers set the pool alight this past weekend at UniSport Nationals Swimming Championships with Queensland University of Technology (QUT) and Griffith University (GU) crowned overall men’s and women’s champions, respectively.
Hosted at Sydney Olympic Park Aquatic Centre and as part of the Sydney Open Invitational meet facilitated by Swimming New South Wales, over 320 university students representing 30 universities battled it out for the men’s and women’s swimming champion pennants.
The Sydney Open was the last hit out ahead of the 2021 Australian Swimming Trials next month and attracted some of the country’s best talent in the pool as they vie for a spot on the Olympic Team competing in Tokyo. The meet caused quite a buzz with 21 UniSport meet records broken in total.
QUT and GU led the point score, taking out the men’s and women’s Nationals Div 1 pennants, opening their accounts towards their 2021 UniSport Nationals campaigns. The finals session on Friday saw impressive performances from both leading university’s student-athletes.
2016 Rio Olympian, Emma McKeon (GU) proved she is in blistering form, breaking the UniSport women’s 50m Butterfly and 100m Freestyle records. Her teammates, Emilie Muir (400m Individual Medley) and Kiah Melverton (800m Freestyle) also posted strong swims to etch their names into the UniSport record book.
A QUT contingent of Isaac Cooper, Louis Townsend, Ethan Banks and Jamie Jack shaved more than two seconds off the men’s 4x50m Medley Relay record, with Cooper also breaking the 50m and 100m Backstroke records throughout the meet. QUT continued to overshadow the men’s relays with subsequent golds and UniSport records in the 4x100m and 4x50m Freestyle relays on Saturday and Sunday.
McKeon remained dominate in Saturday’s finals session, claiming gold in the 50m Freestyle and 100m Butterfly events, also bettering the UniSport records she set two years ago in the same championships. She was joined by fellow Queenslanders, Alex Graham (Bond University) and Ty Hartwell (QUT) in the record book after their convincing wins in the men’s 200m Freestyle and 200m Backstroke events, respectively.
The meet culminated in an exciting finals session on Sunday. Both 1500m Freestyle records were obliterated by Nick Sloman (QUT) and Madeleine Gough (BOND) with another five records falling during the session. The University of Queensland’s Mia O’Leary was a feature taking out both the women’s 50m Breaststroke and 4x50m Freestyle relay events.
Student-athletes also shone in the multi-class events. 2020 UniSport Award winner (Most Outstanding Performance by a Student-Athlete with a Disability), Katja Dedekind (S13) from University of Sunshine Coast proved why she was a deserving winner, walking away with four gold medals from the meet. Fellow 2016 Paralympian and Western Sydney University student Tim Hodge (S9) also swum consistently and was rewarded with gold in all his events.
While QUT and GU shone through in the point score, credit must be given to several other universities who entered extremely strong teams and competed right to the end.
For more information, please contact:
Sport & Operations Manager – Nationals Championships
P: 07 3054 4626