Dec. 7, 2013
IOWA CITY, Iowa – The University of Notre Dame men’s swimming and diving team recorded two more school-record times Saturday, winning seven total events to extend its dominant lead on day two of the Iowa Hawkeye Invitational at the Iowa Campus Recreation and Wellness Center. The Irish have scored 870 points through the first two days of finals competition, followed by Iowa (602 points), Denver (439 points) and Milwaukee (171 points).
The third and final day of the Iowa Hawkeye Invitational is scheduled to begin Sunday at 11 a.m. (ET). Final heats are tentatively scheduled to commence at 5:00 p.m. (ET), with live results available at .
Freshman Tom Anderson wasted little time in the first preliminary event of the morning session Saturday, logging a qualifying time of 3:50.73 in the 400 IM to break the Notre Dame program-record in the distance. Former Irish standout Michael Sullivan previously set the mark with a swim of 3:50.94 at the 2011 BIG EAST Championships.
Anderson was far from done with his record-setting day in the 400 IM, shattering his new program-best with a blistering final clip of 3:46.22 for an NCAA B-cut and gold medal finish for Notre Dame. Junior Matthew DeBlasio traversed the course in 3:51.95 for an NCAA B-cut of his own to claim third place, while sophomore Shane McKenzie (3:54.80, fifth place), freshman Kevin Bradley (3:55.11, sixth place) and junior James McEldrew (4:00.17, eighth) added solid `A’ heat swims.
Notre Dame posted a new top time in a medley relay event for the second consecutive day during the finals of the 200 medley relay. Sophomore Bogac Ayhan, junior Cameron Miller, senior two-time All-American Frank Dyer and junior All-American Zach Stephens clocked a provisional NCAA cut of 1:26.11 to win by more than a full second over the Iowa `A’ entry (1:27.29). The previous team record of 1:26.33 was set by the foursome at the 2013 BIG EAST Championships.
Junior All-American John Williamson swam the first sub 48-second Irish time of the year during the preliminary round of the 100 fly, touching the wall in 47.84 to secure the top spot in the `A’ final. Williamson went wire-to-wire by logging the best final time in the event, tapping the pad in 47.94 for an NCAA B-cut and race victory. Ayhan (48.80, third place) and junior Patrick Olson (48.88, fourth place) gave Notre Dame two more swimmers in the top five, while junior Broderick Kelley added an `A’ swim of 49.41.
Notre Dame swept the podium during the `A’ final of the 200 free, with all three swimmers recording NCAA B-cuts in the process. Dyer paced the entire field with a time of 1:35.01, which placed him more than two full seconds ahead of teammate and runner-up, junior Kevin Hughes (1:37.04). Freshman Trent Jackson added his fastest career swim in the distance with an NCAA B-time of 1:37.91 for third place. Sophomore Michael Hudspith (1:39.22, fifth place), freshman Reed Fujan (1:39.24, sixth place) and junior Brennan Jacobsen 1:39.48, seventh place) also added point-scoring efforts in the `A’ final.
Stephens made a run at the Irish record in the 100 breast, shaving two full seconds off his previous top finals time this season to log a 53.24 and take first place. Senior co-captain Colin Babcock contributed a third-place, NCAA B-cut swim of 53.65, and Miller chipped in an NCAA B-time of 54.24 in the `A’ final.
After swimming the lead-off leg of the 400 medley relay in a program-record 47.80 on Friday night, Ayhan added an NCAA B-cut in the 100 back with a fourth-place time of 48.07 in Saturday’s `A’ final. Sophomore Matthew Buerger (48.67, fifth place) and senior Bertie Nel (49.11, sixth place) joined Ayhan as point scorers in the `A’ final.
Junior Nick Nemetz took home the 3-meter diving title for Notre Dame, scoring a career-best 364.60 points in a final gold medal effort. Freshman Joe Coumos recorded runner-up points with a total of 333.50, while classmate James Lichtenstein (306.80) and junior Michael Kreft (302.90) placed fourth and fifth, respectively.
The Irish concluded the night with a victorious heat in the 800 free relay, improving to 4-0 in Hawkeye Invitational relay events on the weekend. The Notre Dame `A’ entry of Dyer, Hughes, Anderson and Babcock earned a three-plus second win over Denver with a time of 6:32.15. Junior John Nappi, Bradley, Williamson and Buerger chipped in an exhibition time of 6:40.30.