CHAPEL HILL, North Carolina, November 22. THE second night of competition at the Dowd Nike Cup didn’t have the same fire as the first night of racing, but plenty of tight races got the crowd fired up.
Spectators love to see ties in swimming, and the audience in the Koury Natatorium got its wish granted as NC State’s Ian Bishop and Duke’s Hunter Knight both posted times of 54.19 in the men’s 100 breast final for first place. Bishop had a lead of five tenths at the 50, 25.18 to 25.63, while Knight had an equally good second half, posting a 28.56 in the final 50 yards. Placing third was David Speese of North Carolina with a 55.01.
Another close race came in the women’s 400 IM. North Carolina teammates Emma Nunn and Annie Harrison each traded the lead throughout the race with Nunn finishing the butterfly leg three tenths ahead of Harrison, who took a four-second lead after backstroke. Nunn rallied to pull within two seconds of Harrison after breaststroke and then did enough to finish the race with a 4:11.60 to Harrison’s 4:11.81.
North Carolina had plenty to cheer about in the race, putting seven swimmers in the final. Madison Burns (4:16.43), Abby Fisher (4:18.13), Kendall Surhoff (4:18.30), Hannah Runyon-Hass (4:18.33) and Catherine Hulse (4:18.61) placed third through seventh. Duke’s Kiera Molloy was a distant eighth with a 4:21.56.
Four swimmers cracked 1:38 in the men’s 200 free final, with 500 free runner-up John Stilley of North Carolina getting the win with a 1:37.35. Right behind him were 500 free winner Thomas Duvall of Navy (1:37.48), NC State’s Jonathan Boffa (1:37.84), and North Carolina’s Brad Dillon (1:37.89).
Christine Wixted nearly beat her Duke school record of 59.95 in the 100 breast, winning with a 1:00.27 to inch closer to the automatic NCAA qualifying time of 59.19. Megan Sellers of East Carolina was second with a 1:01.71 and Katherine Rechs was third with a 1:01.83.
North Carolina won five of the six remaining individual events, with NC State’s Andreas Schiellerup stopping the Tar Heel sweep with a 46.61 to win the men’s 100 back ahead of five UNC swimmers.
UNC’s Eugene Tee won the 400 IM with a 3:49.97, about three seconds ahead of two North Carolina swimmers. Alex Gianino was second with a 3:53.07 and Patrick Myers took third with a 3:54.49.
Sarah Koucheki of UNC won the women’s 100 fly with a 53.94, holding off teammate Meredith Hoover, who was second with a 54.07. Maddie Rusch of Duke was third with a 54.43.
Sam Lewis won the men’s 100 fly ahead of NCAA finalist Barrett Miesfeld of NC State, 47.20 to 47.87, with Dominick Glavich of UNC third with a 48.03.
Lauren Earp led a 1-2-3-4 UNC sweep in the women’s 200 free. She posted a 1:46.40 to win the race ahead of Allyn Hardesty (1:47.05), Stephanie Peacock (1:47.23) and Danielle Silverling (1:47.43).
Carly Smith beat out Tar Heel teammate Annie Harrison in the women’s 100 back, 53.89 to 54.79. Third place went to East Carolina’s Anna Gibas with a 54.84.
North Carolina won all four relays tonight. The women’s 200 medley relay team of Carly Smith, Katherine Rechsteiner, Hannah Lincoln and Lauren Earp posted a 1:39.93. In the men’s medley relay, Nic Graesser, Kurt Wolhrab, Sam Lewis and Logan Heck won with a 1:26.66.
The Tar Heel women won the 800 free relay with a 7:14.35 using Hardesty, Earp, Silverling and Peacock. Stilley, Dillon, Gianino and Glavich won the 800 free relay handily with a 6:33.80.