Justin Ress, Nicolas Albiero Scorch Final Morning of Men’s ACC Champs

Photo Courtesy: Sarah D. Davis/theACC.com

During the final morning of the men’s ACC championships in Greensboro, N.C., NC State junior Justin Ress and Louisville freshman Nicolas Albiero each threw down quick efforts to set themselves up as No. 1 seeds for finals. Meanwhile, Ress and his Wolfpack teammates continued their march towards a fourth straight conference crown.

First up, Notre Dame’s Rob Whitacre recorded a time of 1:40.17 for the top seed in the men’s 200 back. Finishing in second was NC State’s Coleman Stewart, fresh off a blistering 44.54 in the 100 back Friday evening, and Hennessy Stuart finished third for the Wolfpack in 1:40.91.

Virginia’s Robby Giller took fourth in 1:41.37, with teammate Brendan Casey (1:41.86) and Georgia Tech’s Colton Williamson (1:41.89) just behind. Notre Dame’s Jack Montesi (1:42.06) and Louisville’s Nikkos Sofianidis (1:42.24) also qualified in the top eight.

Event 17  Men 200 Yard Backstroke
==================================================================
   Conference: % 1:38.56  3/26/2016 Hennesey Stuart, NC State
     ACC Meet: & 1:39.05  3/2/2017  Grigory Tarasevich, Louisville-KY
     American: @ 1:35.73  3/26/2016 Ryan Murphy, California
         NCAA: $ 1:35.73  3/26/2016 Ryan Murphy, California
   U. S. Open: * 1:35.73  3/26/2016 Ryan Murphy, California
  Pool Record: ^ 1:39.28  2/27/2016 Grigory Tarasevich, LOU-KY
                 1:39.66  A
                 1:41.74  IV17 Invited to 2017 NCAA
                 1:46.39  B
    Name           Year School               Seed    Prelims              
==================================================================
                      === Preliminaries ===                       
 
  1 Whitacre, Rober  SR ND                1:41.40    1:40.17 qIV17  
    r:+0.59  23.72        49.06 (25.34)
        1:14.62 (25.56)     1:40.17 (25.55)
  2 Stewart, Colema  SO NC State          1:41.68    1:40.65 qIV17  
    r:+0.61  23.74        48.46 (24.72)
        1:13.91 (25.45)     1:40.65 (26.74)
  3 Stuart, Henness  SR NC State          1:40.32    1:40.91 qIV17  
    r:+0.52  23.47        48.54 (25.07)
        1:14.55 (26.01)     1:40.91 (26.36)
  4 Giller, Robby    FR Virginia          1:44.27    1:41.37 qIV17  
    r:+0.60  24.42        50.36 (25.94)
        1:16.25 (25.89)     1:41.37 (25.12)
  5 Casey, Brendan   JR Virginia          1:42.90    1:41.86 qB     
    r:+0.55  23.93        49.53 (25.60)
        1:15.65 (26.12)     1:41.86 (26.21)
  6 Williamson, Col  JR GT                1:43.77    1:41.89 qB     
    r:+0.63  24.26        49.86 (25.60)
        1:15.73 (25.87)     1:41.89 (26.16)
  7 Montesi, Jack    SO ND                1:45.41    1:42.06 qB     
    r:+0.56  23.97        49.25 (25.28)
        1:15.60 (26.35)     1:42.06 (26.46)
  8 Sofianidis, Nik  FR Louisville        1:43.50    1:42.24 qB     
    r:+0.61  24.03        49.87 (25.84)
        1:16.07 (26.20)     1:42.24 (26.17)

Ress qualified first in the men’s 100 free with his time of 41.74. The winner of the 200 free Friday night, Ress led a trio of NC State swimmers in the top three spots as he was followed by Jacob Molacek (42.01) and Ryan Held (42.10). Held will be going for his third win of the meet after already capturing the 50 free and 100 fly.

There was a gap back to the rest of the top eight qualifiers, with Florida State’s Will Pisani leading the way in 42.73, ahead of Louisville’s Andrej Barna (42.77), NC State’s Giovanni Izzo (42.86), Notre Dame’s Daniel Speers (42.88) and Florida State’s Emir Muratovic (43.08).

Event 18  Men 100 Yard Freestyle
==================================================================
   Conference: % 41.18  2/27/2016 Simonas Bilis, NCSU-NC
     ACC Meet: & 41.61  3/2/2017  Ryan Held, NCSU-NC
     American: @ 40.00  3/25/2017 Caeleb Dressel, Florida
         NCAA: $ 40.00  3/25/2017 Caeleb Dressel, Florida
   U. S. Open: * 40.00  3/25/2017 Caeleb Dressel, Florida
  Pool Record: ^ 41.31  12/6/2014 Nathan Adrian, CAL-PC
                 42.11  A
                 42.76  IV17 Invited to 2017 NCAA
                 44.29  B
    Name           Year School               Seed    Prelims              
==================================================================
                      === Preliminaries ===                       
 
  1 Ress, Justin     JR NC State            42.40      41.74 qA     
    r:+0.66  19.78        41.74 (21.96)
  2 Molacek, Jacob   JR NC State            42.71      42.01 qA     
    r:+0.64  20.36        42.01 (21.65)
  3 Held, Ryan       SR NC State            42.45      42.10 qA     
    r:+0.62  20.02        42.10 (22.08)
  4 Pisani, Will     JR Florida St          42.79      42.73 qIV17  
    r:+0.65  20.51        42.73 (22.22)
  5 Barna, Andrej    SO Louisville          43.53      42.77 qB     
    r:+0.63  20.34        42.77 (22.43)
  6 Izzo, Giovanni   FR NC State            44.59      42.86 qB     
    r:+0.63  20.45        42.86 (22.41)
  7 Speers, Daniel   JR ND                  43.52      42.88 qB     
    r:+0.64  20.43        42.88 (22.45)
  8 Muratovic, Emir  JR Florida St          43.11      43.08 qB     
    r:+0.63  20.38        43.08 (22.70)

Georgia Tech should be poised for a strong showing in the 200 breast after Moises Loschi qualified first in 1:54.23, and he will be joined in the final by teammate Caio Pumputis, who qualified eighth in 1:55.68.

Virginia’s Matthew Otto qualified second, just behind Loschi in 1:54.57, and Louisville teammates Carlos Claverie (1:54.57 and Evgenii Somov (1:54.59) took third and fourth, respectively.

The final will also include UNC’s Michael McBryan (1:54.98), Virginia’s Keefer Barnum (1:55.08) and Duke’s Judd Howard (1:55.31).

Event 19  Men 200 Yard Breaststroke
==================================================================
   Conference: % 1:52.39  3/2/2017  Brandon Fiala, VT-VA
     ACC Meet: & 1:52.39  3/2/2017  Brandon Fiala, VT-VA
     American: @ 1:47.91  3/25/2017 Will Licon, Texas
         NCAA: $ 1:47.91  3/25/2017 Will Licon, Texas
   U. S. Open: * 1:47.91  3/25/2017 Will Licon, Texas
  Pool Record: ^ 1:52.87  2/27/2016 Brandon Fiala, VT-VA
                 1:52.94  A
                 1:54.54  IV17 Invited to 2017 NCAA
                 1:59.79  B
    Name           Year School               Seed    Prelims              
==================================================================
                      === Preliminaries ===                       
 
  1 Loschi, Moises   SR GT                1:54.48    1:54.23 qIV17  
    r:+0.63  26.19        54.98 (28.79)
        1:24.39 (29.41)     1:54.23 (29.84)
  2 Otto, Matthew    FR Virginia          1:56.66    1:54.34 qIV17  
    r:+0.68  26.31        55.37 (29.06)
        1:24.62 (29.25)     1:54.34 (29.72)
  3 Claverie, Carlo  SR Louisville        1:53.10    1:54.57 qB     
    r:+0.75  25.70        54.69 (28.99)
        1:24.45 (29.76)     1:54.57 (30.12)
  4 Somov, Evgenii   FR Louisville        1:59.79    1:54.59 qB     
    r:+0.70  25.93        54.23 (28.30)
        1:25.23 (31.00)     1:54.59 (29.36)
  5 McBryan, Michae  SR UNC               1:57.94    1:54.98 qB     
             26.61        55.29 (28.68)
        1:25.02 (29.73)     1:54.98 (29.96)
  6 Barnum, Keefer   FR Virginia          1:59.16    1:55.08 qB     
    r:+0.70  25.79        55.11 (29.32)
        1:24.75 (29.64)     1:55.08 (30.33)
  7 Howard, Judd     JR Duke              1:57.73    1:55.31 qB     
    r:+0.72  26.66        56.20 (29.54)
        1:25.48 (29.28)     1:55.31 (29.83)
  8 Pumputis, Caio   FR GT                1:53.80    1:55.68 qB     
    r:+0.71  26.55        56.24 (29.69)
        1:26.13 (29.89)     1:55.68 (29.55)

Finally, Albiero rounded out the morning with a top-seeded effort of 1:41.61 in the 200 fly prelims. He will have plenty of challenges in the final, though, as NC State’s Andreas Vazaios qualified second in 1:41.69 and Virginia’s Ted Schubert was third in 1:42.00.

Schubert was disqualified in the 400 IM prelims Friday but ended up time trialing and swimming a time of 3:39.52, much faster than Anton Ipsen’s ACC title-winning time of 3:40.48.

Louisville’s Zach Harting (1:42.22) and NC State’s James Bretscher (1:42.61) qualified fourth and fifth, respectively, followed by Virginia’s Zach Fong (1:42.64), Georgia Tech’s Christian Ferraro (1:43.03) and Notre Dame’s Aaron Schultz (1:44.00).

Event 20  Men 200 Yard Butterfly
==================================================================
   Conference: % 1:40.77  3/26/2017 Andreas Vazaios, NCSU-NC
     ACC Meet: & 1:41.42  2/27/2016 Vazalos/McCurdy, NCSU-NC
     American: @ 1:37.35  3/25/2017 Jack Conger, Texas
         NCAA: $ 1:37.35  3/25/2017 Jack Conger, Texas
   U. S. Open: * 1:37.35  3/25/2017 Jack Conger, Texas
  Pool Record: ^ 1:41.42  2/27/2016 Christian McCurdy, NCSU-NC
                 1:41.44  A
                 1:43.09  IV17 Invited to 2017 NCAA
                 1:47.99  B
    Name           Year School               Seed    Prelims              
==================================================================
                      === Preliminaries ===                       
 
  1 Albiero, Nicola  FR Louisville        1:43.81    1:41.61 qIV17  
    r:+0.66  23.17        49.02 (25.85)
        1:15.18 (26.16)     1:41.61 (26.43)
  2 Vazaios, Andrea  JR NC State          1:40.77    1:41.69 qIV17  
    r:+0.72  23.12        49.10 (25.98)
        1:15.24 (26.14)     1:41.69 (26.45)
  3 Schubert, Ted    SO Virginia          1:44.02    1:42.00 qIV17  
    r:+0.66  24.01        50.03 (26.02)
        1:15.89 (25.86)     1:42.00 (26.11)
  4 Harting, Zach    JR Louisville        1:44.51    1:42.22 qIV17  
    r:+0.68  23.18        49.51 (26.33)
        1:15.68 (26.17)     1:42.22 (26.54)
  5 Bretscher, Jame  JR NC State          1:44.70    1:42.61 qIV17  
    r:+0.67  22.44        48.82 (26.38)
        1:15.36 (26.54)     1:42.61 (27.25)
  6 Fong, Zach       JR Virginia          1:42.67    1:42.64 qIV17  
    r:+0.64  23.11        48.89 (25.78)
        1:15.26 (26.37)     1:42.64 (27.38)
  7 Ferraro, Christ  FR GT                1:44.48    1:43.03 qIV17  
    r:+0.72  24.20        49.70 (25.50)
        1:16.11 (26.41)     1:43.03 (26.92)
  8 Schultz, Aaron   SO ND                1:45.71    1:44.00 qB     
    r:+0.72  23.55        49.77 (26.22)
        1:16.75 (26.98)     1:44.00 (27.25)

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Author: David Rieder

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David Rieder is a staff writer for Swimming World. He has contributed to the magazine and website since 2009, and he has covered the NCAA Championships, U.S. Nationals, Olympic Trials as well as the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio and the 2017 World Championships in Budapest. He is a native of Charleston, S.C., and a 2016 graduate of Duke University.

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