Monmouth, IL – The Prairie Fire men’s and women’s teams both placed ninth in their second meet of the season on Saturday at Monmouth College.

The women’s team scored 59 points, just four behind seventh place Principia College (63), and the men’s team scored 36 in the 10-team Monmouth College Invitational.

The big highlight for the Prairie Fire was a first place finish by Chris Walsh (Boulder, CO, Shining Mountain Waldorf School), a first-year swimmer, in the 100 yard backstroke that earned the men’s squad 13 points. Walsh, who finished the event in 56.98 seconds, also scored five points after placing eighth in the 100 yard freestyle.

The other individuals to score points for the Knox men’s team were first-year Sam Chen (Englewood, CO, Cherry Creek) in the 100 yard butterfly and sophomore Nick Polizos (Hoffman Estates, IL, Barrington Community) in the 200 yard breaststroke.

The Prairie Fire men’s team scored 16 points after a pair of eighth place finishes in the 400 yard medley relay and the 400 yard freestyle relay.

The 400 medley relay swimmers were Walsh, Polizos, Chen, and first-year Noah Santer (Plymouth, MI, Salem). Santer, Chen, Walsh, and sophomore Niko Kontos (Northbrook, IL, Glenbrook South) swam in the 400 freestyle.

The Prairie Fire women’s team a combined 22 points in the 400 medley and 400 freestyle relays.

Knox was seventh in the 400 freestyle behind sophomore Susannah Lodge-Rigal (Bloomington, IN, Bloomington), sophomore Madeline Troy (Naperville, IL, Naperville North), first-year Maddie Boehm (Kenosha, WI, Harborside Academy), and sophomore Colleen Shelly (Galesburg, IL, Galesburg). The women’s 400 medley foursome that placed eighth was senior Anna Claypool (Portland, OR, Lincoln), Shelly, Bohm, and Lodge-Rigal.

Shelly, Lodge-Rigal, Claypool, Boehm, Troy, and first-year Taylor Wayment (Littleton, CO, Lakewood) scored points in individual events for the Prairie Fire.

Shelly led the way with points in three events: the 100 breaststroke, the 50 freestyle, and the 100 freestyle. Lodge-Rigal, Claypool, and Boehm each scored in two events: Lodge-Rigal in the 200 and 500 freestyle, Claypool in the 100 and 200 backstroke, and Boehm in the 200 yard IM and the 100 butterfly. Scoring in one event apiece were Wayment in the 200 breaststroke and Troy in the 500 freestyle.

"We had some good swims but we were a little tired going into the meet which is my fault,” coach Jonathan Powers said after the meet.

Lake Forest College placed first in both the women’s and men’s team standings.

Host Monmouth College was the runner-up in the women’s meet. Also finishing in the top five was Loras College, Millikin University, and Carroll University.

The top five men’s teams after LFC were Loras, Monmouth, Principia, and Carroll.

The teams will have time to recover before the next competition. Knox is off for nearly three weeks before taking part in the two-day Pioneer Classic hosted by Grinnell College. The meet begins November 30 and continues December 1.


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