AUSTIN, Texas, November 3. AFTER the initial session of a two-day men's meet featuring No. 4 California and No. 12 Indiana at No. 3 Texas, the Longhorns hold a slim 43-41 lead over California. Meanwhile, Indiana trails Cal (61-23) and Texas (60-24) by wide margins.
The two top individuals of the day proved to be Ricky Berens of Texas (this year's Swimming World Magazine Male High School Swimmer of the Year), who captured a pair of event titles, and Cal's Nathan Adrian, who cleared the B-cut standard in the 50 free on two occasions.
200-yard freestyle relay
Texas and California went head-to-head in an amazingly competitive 200-yard freestyle relay match-up to begin the meet. The Longhorn quartet of Matthew McGinnis, Ricky Berens, Tyler O'Halloran and Garrett Weber-Gale touched out the Cal squad of Nathan Adrian, William Copeland, Jernej Godec and Scott Sorge by a scant .02 seconds, 1:20.69-1:20.71. Both times eclipsed the B-cut standard for NCAAs, while Adrian's leadoff leg of 20.12 provisionally qualified him for nationals.
Meanwhile, Texas's B team of Matthew Lowe, Caleb McDermott, Poston Pritchett and Jeremy Harris rounded out the top three in 1:23.51. Notably, Indiana's top team of Todd Patrick, Ben Hesen, Lee Houchin and Frazier Miller placed fifth in 1:24.94.
Michael Klueh of Texas claimed the middle distance crown with a B-cut time of 4:25.84, while California swept the next two spots when Daniel Lysaught stopped the clock in 4:27.38 for second and Dominik Meichtry took third in 4:27.60. Alex Brunfeldt earned the Hoosiers' top finish with a fourth-place 4:29.51.
Ricky Berens earned top billing in the 200 IM as he provisionally qualified for NCAAs with a title-winning time of 1:48.86. Cal's Mark Eckert placed second in 1:49.84 to just miss a B-cut of his own, while Texas's Caleb McDermott grabbed third in 1:50.51. Ben Hesen provided IU's best finish with a sixth-place 1:53.11.
Cal went 1-2 in the sprint free as Nathan Adrian improved his B-cut time from 20.12 as the 200 free relay leadoff earlier to a winning time of 20.08. Meanwhile, his teammate William Copeland placed second in 20.23. Texas' Garrett Weber-Gale snared third in 20.32, while Todd Patrick gave Indiana its highest finish with an eighth-place 21.37.
400-yard medley relay
The Bears continued to keep it close with a dominating win in the 400 medley relay. The Cal contingent of David Russell, Richard Hunter, Jernej Godec and William Copeland led a pair of teams to record B cuts in the event. Cal hit the wall in 3:15.08 to beat out Texas teammates Thomas Sacco, Tyler O'Halloran, Ricky Berens and Garrett Weber-Gale. The Longhorns wound up clocking a 3:16.65 to take second. Texas, however, picked up third-place points when Caleb McDermott, Matthew Lowe, Daniel Rohleder and Matthew McGinnis turned in a 3:21.16.
Indiana's fastest team of Ben Hesen, Pat Penoyar, Todd Patrick and Lee Houchin came in with a fifth-place effort of 3:21.48.
Notably, both Russell (47.67) and Hesen (48.43) registered B cuts in their 100 back leadoffs. Also of note, Penoyar posted the quickest breaststroke leg in 55.70, while Berens came home with the best butterfly leg in 47.07. Adrian closed out his solid day of swimming with a 43.58 for the quickest anchor leg of the relay.
Session two of the meet begins tonight at 6 p.m., while the final session begins on Saturday at 9 a.m.