Sophomore Zachary Stephens nearly bested his own pool record with a time of 1:59.65 to win the 200 breaststroke Saturday

No. 18/21 Notre Dame Improve To 5-0 With Win Over Rival Louisville

Nov. 10, 2012

Complete Results

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NOTRE DAME, Ind. – The University of Notre Dame men’s swimming and diving team kept their unblemished season going with a 155.5-145.5 victory over No. 23/16 Louisville in a dual meet at the Rolfs Aquatic Center.

The Fighting Irish (5-0) are off to their best start to open the dual schedule since 2006-07, when the squad started 8-0.

“These two meets (against Pittsburgh and Louisville) have been in less than 24 hours, so it has been a great deal of racing, and to finish with a win today (against Louisville) is really exciting for these guys who have put in a lot of work,” said head coach Tim Welsh. “There is a lot of good stuff within this group, and we know there is a lot more ahead, and we will be back to work on Monday.”

All-American Frank Dyer continued to lead the way for the Irish by winning both of his individual swims, including a down-to-the-wire victory in the 200 freestyle (1:36.85) over reigning BIG EAST Conference champion Joao De Lucca (1:36.98).

“This was probably the showdown race of the season in the BIG EAST Conference,” said Welsh. “Frank was phenomenal and he is just such a reliable performer for us.”

Dyer also won the 500 free (4:29.11) as well as joining Bogac Ayhan, Cameron Miller, and Kevin Overholt to open the meet with a victory in the 200 medley relay (1:29.18).

Zachary Stephens became the first person to clear the two-minute barrier in the 200 breast (1:59.53) as he set a Rolfs Aquatic Center pool record in the event on his way to winning that event. Senior captain Christopher Johnson swam to a thrilling tie in the 50 free (20.92), a race that Welsh said, “was a huge moment for us in the course of the meet.”

The Irish divers claimed gold in both events, with Nick Nemetz (329.85) winning the 1-meter dive and Michael Kreft (367.06) earning the victory in the 3-meter dive.

“Today was a great job by the guys doing what they needed to all the way down the line,” Welsh said.

Additional Rolf Aquatic Center pool records were broken today, as Louisville’s Kameron Chastain (54.53 – 100 breast), Caryle Blondell (19.90 – 50 free [leadoff split on the 200 free relay]), and the 200 free relay squad of Caryle Blondell, Kameron Chastain, Samuel Hoekstra, and Joao De Lucca (1:19.93).

The Fighting Irish return to the water Nov. 30 – Dec. 2 at the Hawkeye Invitational at the Campus Recreation and Wellness Center in Iowa City, Iowa to close out the first half of the season. They will return to the Rolfs Aquatic Center next on Jan. 25 and 26 to host the Shamrock Invitational in what will be their final home event of the 2012-13 season.


200 Medley Relay: Down slightly at the halfway mark after the leadoff swim of Ayhan and Miller, Dyer dove in and erased the deficit while creating almost a second of a lead for the Irish, out-splitting the field on the fly leg by a full second ââ’¬¦ Overholt flew off the block and withstood a late Cardinal charge to secure the inaugural victory of the meet for the Irish, stopping the clock at 1:29.18 to best the challenger’s 1:29.42 ââ’¬¦ the “B” squad (1:30.83) of Bertie Nel, Chris Johnson, Zach Stephens, and Bill Bass earned third.

1,000 Free: Louisville’s Bryan Draganosky (9:18.61) cruised to a victory in the distance event ââ’¬¦ James McEldrew (9:28.88) and John Nappi (9:33.20) grabbed the silver and bronze, respectively while Brennan Jacobsen (9:34.13) came in fourth for the Irish.

200 Free: In a battle of 2012 All-Americans and a rematch of the BIG EAST final from last season, Dyer (1:36.85) bested rival Joao De Lucca (1:36.98) to pick up his first individual and second overall victory on the day ââ’¬¦ John McGinley (1:40.89) touched the wall fifth.

100 Back: Nel (50.42) out-touched Louisville’s Nolan Tesone (50.45) to earn yet another victory for the Irish ââ’¬¦ Matthew Buerger (51.01) and Ayhan (51.03) placed fourth and fifth for the Irish, respectively.

100 Breast: Louisville’s Kameron Chastain blazed a new Rolf’s Aquatic Center pool record en route to recording a time of 54.53 to win the event ââ’¬¦ Notre Dame’s Miller (55.29), Zach Stephens (55.48), and Colin Babcock (56.45) claimed second through fourth place to pick up points for the Irish.

200 Fly: A late surge by John Williamson (1:49.94) was not enough to overtake the nearly two second lead that Louisville’s Kevin Bandy (1:49.93) accrued, and Bandy won by the narrowest of margins ââ’¬¦ Bass (1:51.66) and Buerger (1:53.31) placed fourth and fifth, respectively.

50 Free: One hundredth of a second was not enough to differentiate between Chris Johnson and Samuel Hoekstra hit the pads simultaneously to tie for first with identical times of 20.92 ââ’¬¦ Overholt (21.07) came in fourth for Notre Dame.

1M Dive: Nick Nemetz continued his winning ways, placing first with a point total of 329.85 ââ’¬¦ Michael Kreft followed up with a silver-place showing, scoring a total of 295.42 ââ’¬¦ Ted Wagner (272.85) placed fifth for the Irish.

100 Free: Louisville’s Caryle Blondell bested a 13-year old Rolfs Aquatic Center pool record as he blasted to a win in 43.62 ââ’¬¦ McGinley (45.48) picked up the bronze medal and Overholt (46.25) came in fifth place for the Irish.

200 Back: Louisville’s Nolan Tesone posted a winning time of 1:48.20 ââ’¬¦ McEldrew (1:50.89) earned third place ââ’¬¦ Buerger (1:51.02) and Nel (1:51.51) came in fourth and fifth for Notre Dame.

200 Breast: Zach Stephens broke the 2-minute mark and the Rolfs Aquatic Center’s pool record in a sterling time of 1:59.53 to post the victory for Notre Dame ââ’¬¦ Miller (2:02.83) placed third to round out the medal podium for Notre Dame.

500 Free: Dyer lead from the start off the block and never looked back, clocking a 4:29.11 to win his second event of the day ââ’¬¦ Kevin Hughes (4:34.87), Nappi (4:39.40), and Brennan Jacobsen (4:41.83) finished third through fifth for the Irish.

100 Fly: Albert Lloyd (49.84) of Louisville held off a late rally by Bill Bass (49.89) to secure the win while relegating Bass to silver ââ’¬¦ John Williamson (49.97) rallied to claim third place for Notre Dame.

3M Dive: Michael Kreft (367.06) led the way for Notre Dame as the Irish swept the top three places, with Nick Nemetz (365.10) and Ryan Koter (304.73) completing the medal sweep.