PITTSBURGH, Pennsylvania, November 5. FOR the second straight season the Notre Dame-Pittsburgh men’s swimming and diving dual meet came down to the final relay event, the 400-yard freestyle relay, and for the second year in a row the Irish finished on top in the relay and the meet.
Entering the final event, the Panthers held a 119-107 advantage but the Irish would go 1-2 and claim 15 of the possible 17 points to secure the victory, 122-121, in Trees Pool. The Fighting Irish, who are ranked 19th in the CSCAA dual meet rankings, are now 2-1 on the season.
The Notre Dame 400-yard free relay ‘A’ squad consisting of Louis Cavadini, Alan Carter, Nick Fanslau and Tim Kegelman clocked a time of 3:06.35 to place first. The Irish ‘B’ squad of Ted Brown, Chris Barnes, Rob Seery and Tim Randolph was close behind in 3:06.81. Pittsburgh’s ‘A’ team finished in 3:07.77.
Last year, the Irish led 142-141 going into the 400-yard free relay against Pittsburgh in the Rolfs Aquatic Center. The Notre Dame squad of Frank Krakowski, Louis Cavadini, Nick Fanslau and Tim Kegelman touched the wall .04 ahead of the Panthers and the Irish claimed the 155-145 victory.
Notre Dame claimed four individual victories on the night to go along with the 400 free relay title. Sophomore Jay Vanden Berg won the 1,000-yard free and the 500-yard free for the third straight meet. Junior Ted Brown won the 200-yard freestyle and freshman Daniel Rave took home first-place honors in the 200-yard breaststroke.
400 Medley Relay: Notre Dame’s ‘A’ team consisting of Doug Bauman, Tim Randolph, Tim Kegelman and Louis Cavadini posted a second-place finish in a time of 3:25.22 to put the Irish on the board with four points. The Fighting Irish’s ‘B’ squad of Andrew MacKay, Graham Parker, Steve Shomberger and Nick Fanslau was fourth in 3:29.21.
1,000 Freestyle: Sophomore Jay Vanden Berg collected his third straight 1,000-yard free victory with a season-best time of 9:22.47. Freshman Jace Hopper (9:25.02) and senior Patrick Davis (9:28.16) finished third and fourth, respectively, to bring the Irish’s point total to 14 for the race.
200 Freestyle: The Irish posted a 1-2-3 finish to go up 34-21 for the meet. Ted Brown clocked another victory as he swam in 1:40.85. Brian Freeman was second in 1:42.24 and Rob Seery was third in 1:42.80. Both Freeman and Seery established season-best times.
50 Freestyle: Louis Cavadini and Tim Randolph finished second and third in respective times of 21.13 and 21.27. The Irish led 41-33 after four events.
200 IM: Notre Dame would lock up eight more points as Jamie Lutkus, Tim Kegelman and Andrew MacKay would all finish in the top five. Lutkus clocked in a second-place time of 1:54.30, while Kegelman was third in 1:55.49 and MacKay fifth at 1:56.62.
One-Meter Diving: The Fighting Irish totaled three team points with Sam Stoner collecting 274.13 from his six dives and Michael Bulfin would post 268.48 on his attempts. The Panthers climbed ahead after six events with a 60-52 advantage.
200 Butterfly: Bryan Guarnier (1:52.63) and Patrick Heffernan (1:53.46) kept the deficit in check by going 2-3 to take seven points.
100 Freestyle: Both Ted Brown (46.42) and Nick Fanslau (47.14) swam season-best times as they finished third and fourth, giving Notre Dame five points. Despite those efforts, the Panthers increased their lead to 86-64.
200 Backstroke: Notre Dame showed its depth with Steve Shomberger (1:52.59), Doug Bauman (1:53.37) and Brian Freeman (1:53.78) going 2-3-4 to grab nine more points, yet the Panthers would take 10 points for the event. The times by Shomberger and Freeman were season-best marks.
500 Freestyle: The Fighting Irish began to chip away at the lead by going 1-2-3 to take 16 points. Jay Vanden Berg won in a season-best time of 4:34.55, Jace Hopper was behind him in 4:36.02 and Patrick Davis swam a season-best mark of 4:36.04 to place third. Vanden Berg’s win marked the third time this year (out of three) that he has won both the 1,000-yard and 500-yard freestyle races in a dual meet competition. The Irish trailed 99-89 following 10 events.
Three-Meter Diving: Michael Bulfin placed third with 288.60 and Sam Stoner was fifth with 262.28. Their performances gave the Irish four points but Pittsburgh would lead by 21 (114-93) after 11 events.
200 Breaststroke: Irish freshman Daniel Rave would come up huge by winning the event by just .05 in a time of 2:05.17. Notre Dame would also claim the third and fourth spots with Graham Parker swimming in 2:06.51 and Tyler Grenda in 2:07.25. The Irish trailed 119-107 heading into the final event.
400 Freestyle Relay: The meet would come down to the final event and the Fighting Irish stepped it up when it counted the most. Notre Dame’s ‘A’ squad of Louis Cavadini, Alan Carter, Nick Fanslau and Tim Kegelman placed first in 3:06.35 and the ‘B’ team of Ted Brown, Chris Barnes, Rob Seery and Tim Randolph was second in a time of 3:06.81 to give the Irish 15 points and a thrilling 122-121 victory.