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COLUMBUS, Ohio After a pair of second-place finishes and a third-place standing on the first day of competition in the U.S. Collegiate National Synchronized Swimming Championships at the Bill and Mae McCorkle Aquatic Pavilion Thursday, Ohio State nabbed its first top placing Friday in the team routine. With a 97.000, the Scarlet team finished first in the team semifinal and will look to hold on to that standing in the finals Saturday.

The day began with the technical competition in which the Buckeyes placed six student-athletes in the Top 15. Competing in the “A” figures category, Barbara Nesbitt earned the highest marks of any Buckeye, an 82.928, placing her sixth for her well executed stunts. Also placing in the Top 15 were Leah Pinette in 11th, Caitlin Stewart in 12th, Deborah Shim in 14th and Michelle Theriault in 15th. In “B” figures Hilary Deason earned marks of 69.667 to place seventh.

Following the elements and figures competition were the team performances. The Scarlet squad, comprised of Michelle Benzie, Jayme DeLancy, Carmen Moraes, Nesbitt, Pinette, Shim, Stewart and Theriault held off returning national champion Stanford with their stellar routine. The Cardinal earned marks of 95.500 to place second. The Buckeye Gray team, made up of Kaitlin Bolt, Julia Broadfoot, Liz Derr, Jackie Mundy, Brooke Paul, Hannah Shively, Emilie Siemer and Kendra Sollars also faired well during team semifinals scoring a 92.667 to come up behind Stanford in third.

Competition at the U.S. Collegiate National Championships will continue with the finals in all four categories Saturday. The final day will begin with the Parade of Athletes at 8:30 a.m., followed by the trio, solo, duet and team competitions.