The University of Louisiana-Lafayette water ski team won the Division 1 national title at the Syndicate Waterskis 43rd Collegiate Water Ski National Championships, Oct. 13-15, at the San Marcos River Ranch in Martindale, Texas. The Ragin’ Cajuns tallied 12,515.0 points in winning their third consecutive and ninth overall national title since the inception of the event in 1979. The University of Alabama finished second with 12,235.0 points. The University of Louisiana-Monroe, which tallied 11,815.0 points, placed third. Arizona State University finished fourth with 10,945.0 points and Florida Southern College was fifth with 10,310.0 points.
The Nationals included 12 teams in Division 1 and 12 teams in Division 2. National team champions were declared in both divisions. Individual medals for slalom, tricks and jumping were awarded based on athletes' placements within their division. Overall titles were awarded in each division to athletes competing in all three events. Athletes finishing in the top-five in each event of slalom, tricks, jumping and overall in Division 1 earned All-American honors.
The Division 1 field was comprised of: University of Alabama, Arizona State University, Clemson University, Florida Southern College, Kansas University, University of Louisiana-Lafayette, University of Louisiana-Monroe, Miami of Ohio University, University of Michigan, Ohio State University, Rollins College and University of Wisconsin.
Athletes winning individual national titles in Division 1 were: University of Louisiana-Monroe’s Tim Tornquist (Sweden), men’s slalom (5 buoys at 39-1/2 feet off); University of Louisiana-Lafayette’s Ali Garcia (Winter Garden, Fla.), women’s slalom (5-1/2 buoys at 38 feet off); Rollins College’s Patricio Font (Mexico), men’s tricks (6,910 points);Rollins College's Neilly Ross (Canada), women’s tricks (5,430 points); University of Alabama’s William Roberts (Dow, Ill.), men’s jumping (181 feet); Alabama’s Agustina Varas (Chile), women’s jumping (150 feet); University of Louisiana-Lafayette’s Luke Outram (Great Britain), men’s overall (1,665 points); and University of Louisiana-Lafayette’s Kennedy Hansen (Milton, Fla.), women’s overall (1,680 points).
The Division 2 field was comprised of: University of Arkansas, Auburn University, Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, UC Berkeley, University of Cincinnati, Michigan State University, University of Nebraska, Purdue University, San Diego State University, University of Texas, Texas A&M University and Western Washington University.
Texas A&M University won the Division 2 team title, scoring 10,045.0 points. Michigan State University placed second (9,340.0 points), followed by Purdue University (8,900 points), University of Nebraska (8,785.0 points) and the University of Cincinnati (8,490.0 points).
Athletes winning individual national titles in Division 2 were: Texas A&M University’s Zachary Butterfield (Sherman, Texas) and University of Nebraska’s Samuel Weber (Lincoln, Neb.), men’s slalom (tie: 5 buoys at 35 feet off); Texas A&M University’s Zachary Butterfield (Sherman, Texas), men’s jumping (149 feet) and overall (1,745 points); University of Texas’ Tristan Morgan (McQueeney, Texas), men’s tricks (2,020 points); University of Arkansas’ Claire Meara (Kansas City, Mo.), women’s jumping (99 feet) and overall (1,580 points); and Texas A&M University’s Kristen Babiash (Granbury, Texas), women’s slalom (4 buoys at 32 feet off) and tricks (1,220 points).
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