March 25, 2015
NOTRE DAME, Ind. – The University of Notre Dame men’s swimming team left Tuesday morning for the University of Iowa to compete in the 2015 NCAA Championships held at the University’s Campus Recreation and Wellness Center (CRWC). The meet runs Thursday through Saturday, Mar. 26-28.
“This meet is one of the fastest in the world; we are very excited to be here,” Irish skipper Matt Tallman states. “We need to be here and we need to make a name for ourselves in the process. It’s great to see the best athletes compete at their best, and I hope our guys watch this year with the thought of learning from this experience.”
Senior All-Americans Zachary Stephens and Jonathan Williamson will both be making their third consecutive trip with the Irish after posting NCAA Championship individual qualifying times earlier in the season. Sophomore Tom Anderson is the only other individual swimmer to qualify this season after swimming a 3:43.03 in the 400 IM at the last chance meet hosted by Ohio State in early March, while diver Joseph Coumos makes his second trip to the title meet in as many seasons on the strength of his three-meter finish at the Zone C meet three weeks ago. Trent Jackson, Reed Fujan, Benjamin Jany and Justin Plaschka will all also make the trip as relay-only entrants.
“My hope for Zach[ary] and Jon[athan] is that they are able to accomplish new standards for themselves this weekend; they have been vital pieces to the rapid improvement of our program and they deserve to go out on top,” admits Tallman. “Tommy has some experience from being here last year for the relays, and I know he has some unfinished business still in this season.
“Trent, Reed, Ben and Justin need to relax and swim smart, strong races. This weekend should help propel their futures as key members of our team in these next few years,” the first year head coach says.
The Irish have experience at the Hawkeye pool, as they came in second at the Hawkeye Invitational in December by half a point. Despite the second-place finish, Stephens set new meet records in the 200 IM and 100 breast and a handful of Irish swimmers earned B-cut times that weekend.
At last year’s championship, Stephens swam to a 34th-place finish in the 200 IM (1:45.52) and a 25th-place finish in the 100 breast (53.47) before coming in 26th in the 200 breast (1:55.74). He also swam with the 200 medley relay team that finished 25th (1:27.35) and 400 free relay squad that came in 21st (2:55.22). Williamson, swimming in the 500 free, 100 fly and 200 fly, earned NCAA personal bests in each event, finishing 52nd in the 500 free (4:29.57), 38th in the 100 fly (47.72) and 24th in the 200 fly (1:44.01). As a relay-only swimmer, Anderson helped the 200 free relay team finish 26th (1:20.93) and the 800 free relay team took 19th (6:26.18) in the event.
All three preliminary sessions will be streamed live on Hawkeye All-Access on hawkeyesports.com, while live finals coverage will be available on ESPN3 on bothFridayand Saturdayand can also be viewed via the WatchESPN app. Live stats will be available herefor swimming, with diving scores displayed here.
2015 Notre Dame Men’s Swimming Individual Qualifiers (can also compete in relays)
Tom Anderson (4:24.56)#
Zachary Stephens (1:44.26)#
Tom Anderson (3:43.03)!
Jonathan Williamson (47.48)#
Zachary Stephens (52.54)!
Tom Anderson (1:44.11)#
Zachary Stephens (1:55.49)#
Jonathan Williamson (1:43.57)!
! – Automatic Qualifying Time
# – Invited Time
Notre Dame Relay-Only Swimmers
Notre Dame Relays Qualified:
200 Medley Relay
800 Free Relay