Chris Johnson set a new team and BIG EAST meet record in the 100 breast.

Irish Extend Lead Heading Into Final Day

March 1, 2013

BIG EAST RESULTS – DAY 3Get Acrobat Reader

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – The Notre Dame men’s swimming and diving squad broadened its lead on the third night of the 2013 BIG EAST Championships. The team will enter the final day of competition in prime position to repeat as BIG EAST Conference champions.

The Irish concluded the third day of competition with a sizable lead, pacing the field with 703 points and trailed by Louisville, who is in second place with 522 points.

Senior captain Chris Johnson made BIG EAST Championship history, lowering the meet record in the 100 breaststroke when he finished first in 52.95. This was Johnson’s first BIG EAST title, and the time lowered the team record (53.72), which was set by Zach Stephens earlier in the morning. Johnson led a trio of Irish swimmers to the third 1-2-3 finish of the meet, a feat that had not been accomplished a single time prior to this year.

“Being from Indiana, I have swum here (at the IUPUI Natatorium) many times,” said Johnson, “and I knew this would be one of my last swims in the 100 breast and I really wanted the win and the record was icing on the cake. These guys (on the team) have been swimming out of their minds this week, and it’s been an honor to have been chosen by them to lead as a captain of the team.”

Senior Bill Bass (47.38) and sophomore Jonathan Williamson (47.93) garnered All-BIG EAST honors in the 100 butterfly. This is Bass’ fourth honor of the meet and 17th over the span of his career. Junior Frank Dyer (1:34.70) came up short in his bid to sweep his individual events and placed second in the 200 freestyle for the third consecutive year.

“Coming into this morning, we had 21 guys compete,” said head coach Tim Welsh. “Out of those 21 entries, 20 of them made it to the A finals, and the 21st person was ninth. Tonight was wonderful, punctuated by the 1-2-3 finish in the 100 breaststroke, and it was great to see Chris Johnson, our senior captain, go out as a BIG EAST champion, especially in a meet in his home state of Indiana.”

Sophomore diver Michael Kreft finished second in the 3-meter dive by slim margins, scoring 338.20 points and finishing one tenth of a point behind first place.

The final day of competition will begin with prelims tomorrow starting at 10:00am (EST). Live results and coverage will be available at



400 IM: Matthew DeBlasio (3:50.95) led the Irish squadron, securing All-BIG EAST honors with a third place finish and narrowly missing the team record by one-hundredth of a second … John Nappi (3:51.33), Colin Babcock (3:52.87) and James McEldrew (3:53.91) took fourth through sixth place, all with times below the NCAA B-cut standard … Patrick Olson (3:58.61) placed eighth overall in the championship final heat.

100 Fly: Bill Bass (47.38) added to his medal haul, placing second and joined on the medal stand by Jonathan Williamson (47.93) to net them both All-BIG EAST honors and NCAA B-cuts … Bogac Ayhan (49.38) touched the wall seventh to garner significant points for the Irish.

200 Free: Frank Dyer (1:34.70) records his third consecutive All-BIG EAST honor in the event, taking second place for the third year in a row … Kevin Hughes (1:36.45) just missed an All-BIG EAST honor of his own, finishing fourth in an NCAA B-cut time … John McGinley (1:38.14) scored valuable points for the Irish in his eighth place finish.

100 Breast: Senior Chris Johnson (52.95) leveled the team record and broke a five-year old BIG EAST Championship meet record on his way to winning the event for the first time in his career … the previous meet record had been held by West Virginia’s Kevin Donohue (53.07), set back in 2008 … the mark eclipsed the previous team record (53.72) set earlier in the day by teammate Zach Stephens … Stephens (53.17) improved his own time to win second place, and was joined by Cameron Miller (53.53) who finished third … this is the third time the team has swept the top three positions in an event … all three swimmers finished under the previous team record … Colin Babcock (54.79) earned seventh place in the championship final … all four swimmers recorded an NCAA B-cut.

100 Back: Bogac Ayhan (48.80) picked up his second All-BIG EAST honor en route to a third place finish in the penultimate swimming event of the evening … Bertie Nel (49.33) recorded a sixth place finish as well in the championship final heat.

3-Meter Dive: Michael Kreft (338.20) picked up his second career All-BIG EAST honor as he missed first place by one of the slimmest margins possible (.1 points) … Ted Wagner (320.50) finished fifth in the championship finals and Nick Nemetz (270.30) took home eighth overall in the championship final … Ryan Koter (309.00) was the top performer in the consolation final, and finished ninth overall.

400 Medley Relay: The quartet raced out nearly even with the Louisville team after the first two legs of Ayhan and Johnson … Bass hammered home the fly leg to hand the Irish a slight advantage going into the anchor leg … Stephens was unable to stave off the charging Louisville swimmer, and the team took the silver in a time of 3:12.98 to earn an All-BIG EAST honor.


400 IM: The Irish place five swimmers in the championship final for the third time, led by John Nappi (3:52.08) in second seed and followed immediately by teammates Matthew DeBlasio (3:52.86), Colin Babcock (3:53.10), Patrick Olson (3:53.27), and James McEldrew (3:54.37) … each swimmer recorded a time below the NCAA B-cut for the event … freshman Shane McKenzie swam as an exhibition swimmer, and recorded a time of 3:56.86.

100 Fly: Bill Bass (47.97) was the highest Irish finisher in the morning session, touching second and recording an NCAA B-cut … Jonathan Williamson (48.51) also posted an NCAA B-cut and will enter tonight as the fourth seed and Bogac Ayhan (49.24) will be seeded seventh … Sophomore Broderick Kelley (49.57) competed as an exhibition swimmer as well.

200 Free: Frank Dyer (1:36.65) will enter the evening as the top seed in the event and he will be looking for his first victory in this distance after finishing second for the past two years … John McGinley (1:37.87) claimed the fifth seed and was followed by Kevin Hughes (1:37.89) who qualified sixth … all three swimmers swam underneath the NCAA B-cut in the event … Kevin Overholt (1:38.62) and Michael Hudspith (1:39.66) both swam in the event as exhibition swimmers.

100 Breast: Zach Stephens (53.72) downed the team record in the event, finishing third in the preliminary heats … previous record was 53.75, set by Chris Johnson at the BIG EAST Championships in 2011 … Johnson will look to reclaim the mark tonight, as he is seeded fourth with a time of 53.94 … Cameron Miller (54.14) and Colin Babcock (54.19) will enter the evening fifth and sixth, respectively … all four swimmers were below the NCAA B-cut in the event … Mason Weber (55.34) competed as an exhibition swimmer.

100 Back: Bogac Ayhan (48.72) returns as the highest Irish seed for the night and will swim from the third position in championship finals … Bertie Nel (49.22) will be right on his heels as he qualified fourth for tonight’s action … Matthew Buerger (48.77) posted a swift time in his exhibition swim in the event.

3-Meter Dive: Michael Kreft heads into the evening in the top position, qualifying first with a score of 343.85. Ted Wagner (324.70) and Nicholas Nemetz (302.30) qualified third and fourth, respectively, and will also compete in the championship final tonight … Ryan Koter placed into the consolation final, placing tenth in the morning session with a score of 281.25.


Notre Dame Victories by Event
200 Medley Relay – Bogac Ayhan, Cameron Miller, Frank Dyer, Zach Stephens – 1:26.33
500 Freestyle – Frank Dyer – 4:20.53
200 Individual Medley – Zach Stephens – 1:45.41
50 Freestyle – Frank Dyer – 19.62
100 Breaststroke – Chris Johnson – 52.95

Notre Dame Victories by Individual
Frank Dyer – 500 Free, 50 Free, 200 Medley Relay
Zach Stephens – 200 IM, 200 Medley Relay
Chris Johnson – 100 Breast
Bogac Ayhan – 200 Medley Relay
Cameron Miller – 200 Medley Relay

NCAA Qualifying Relay Times
800 Free Relay – Frank Dyer, Kevin Hughes, John McGinley, Bill Bass – 6:23.40
200 Medley Relay – Bogac Ayhan, Cameron Miller, Frank Dyer, Zach Stephens – 1:26.33

NCAA Provisional Relay Times
200 Free Relay – Frank Dyer, Zach Stephens, John McGinley, Bill Bass – 1:18.91


Zach Stephens – 200 IM (1:45.41); 100 Breast (53.17)
Bill Bass – 200 IM (1:45.78); 100 Fly (47.38)
Colin Babcock – 200 IM (1:46.40); 400 IM (3:52.87); 100 Breast (54.19)
Cameron Miller – 200 IM (1:47.94); 100 Breast (53.53)
Patrick Olson – 200 IM (1:48.29); 400 IM (3:53.27)
Frank Dyer – 500 Free (4:20.53); 50 Free (19.62); 200 Free (1:34.70)
Kevin Hughes – 500 Free (4:23.67); 200 Free (1:36.45)
Brennan Jacobsen – 500 Free (4:23.71)
Jonathan Williamson – 500 Free (4:24.87), 100 Fly (47.93)
John Nappi – 400 IM (3:51.33)
Matthew DeBlasio – 400 IM (3:50.95)
John McGinley – 200 Free (1:37.87)
Chris Johnson – 100 Breast (52.95)
Jimmy McEldrew – 400 IM (3:53.91)

Notre Dame Team Records
800 Free Relay – Frank Dyer, Kevin Hughes, John McGinley, Bill Bass – 6:23.40
200 Medley Relay – Bogac Ayhan, Cameron Miller, Frank Dyer, Zach Stephens – 1:26.33
50 Free – Frank Dyer – 19.63
100 Breast – Chris Johnson – 52.95

All-BIG EAST Honors
Frank Dyer – 500 Free, 50 Free, 200 Free, 800 Free Relay, 200 Medley Relay, 200 Free Relay
Nick Nemetz – 1-Meter Dive
Kevin Hughes – 500 Free, 800 Free Relay
John McGinley – 800 Free Relay, 200 Free Relay
Bill Bass – 200 IM, 100 Fly, 800 Free Relay, 200 Free Relay, 400 Medley Relay
Bogac Ayhan – 200 Medley Relay, 400 Medley Relay
Cameron Miller – 100 Breast, 200 Medley Relay
Zach Stephens – 200 IM, 100 Breast, 200 Medley Relay, 200 Free Relay, 400 Medley Relay
Brennan Jacobsen – 500 Free
Colin Babcock – 200 IM
Matthew DeBlasio – 400 IM
Jonathan Williamson – 100 Fly
Chris Johnson – 100 Breast, 400 Medley Relay