March 1, 2013
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GREENSBORO, N.C.—The Virginia men’s swimming and diving team extended its lead on day three of the Atlantic Coast Conference Championships Friday night (March 1) at the Greensboro Aquatic Center in Greensboro, N.C.
The Cavaliers lead with 528 points, followed by Virginia Tech (400), North Carolina (374), Florida State (353), NC State (323.5), Duke (197), Georgia Tech (179.5) and Boston College (93).
“We came out on fire this morning,” UVa head coach Mark Bernardino said. “We carried a ton of enthusiasm, energy and momentum from last night into this morning’s swims and we were terrific. We showed a little bit of fatigue this evening, but to put 14 swimmers into championship finals is a monumental achievement.
“We have to go into tomorrow with the same mentality as we did this morning. The last thing we can do is get complacent and we have to go into tomorrow morning physically and mentally tough because it’s a challenging last day.”
Senior Tom Barrett claimed gold in the 200 free in a time of 1:35.03 with freshman Nick Alexiou joining him on the podium with a third-place finish in 1:35.57. Junior Parker Camp was eighth in 1:37.35, while classmate Jonathan Buerger was third in the consolation final in 1:37.30.
Virginia has won the 200 free for the sixth consecutive year and 11 times in the last 14 years.
“To have six straight wins in an event as dynamic as the 200 free, is outstanding,” Bernardino said. “I’m really proud of Tom because he came here as 50 freestyler. Chip Kline, our associate head coach, saw something in Tom and has worked hard to develop his aerobic capacity, because he holds so much water like a Matt McLean or a David Karasek. He’s a strong, powerful guy and to win the 200 free speaks volumes to his mental and physical toughness and his heart.”
“I’ve been thinking about the 200 ever since I finished second to David Karasek last year,” Barrett said. “That’s what I’ve been working towards, to look up and see that No. 1 next to your name. Everyone always told me that I looked like a 200 swimmer, but it was the coaching staff here at UVa that put faith in me that I could be successful in the 200. With the hard training we do at Virginia, it has turned me into a 200 swimmer.”
In the 400 IM, sophomore David Ingraham placed second in 3:46.68, while junior Brad Phillips was third in 3:48.25. Fellow junior Jan Daniec was fifth in 3:46.68 and classmate Nathan Hart was eighth in 3:55.63.
Freshman Chris Webb finished third in the consolation final in 3:49.55, a season-best time.
“We have to give huge thumbs up to our 400 IM’ers,” Bernardino said. “We got career-best times out of all five guys and they all attacked the race and finished strong. They got us off to that great start in the morning and we just went on from there.”
Junior Taylor Grey claimed silver in the 100 breast in 53.67, while freshman Yannick Kaeser was sixth in 53.97. Those times rank third and sixth on UVa's all-time list.
“Taylor had a great swim coming from the seventh seed to finish second,” Bernardino said. “He came to me after the morning session and said, ‘what can I do to get better?’ We talked about it and boy, did he get better and broke through that 54 second barrier, as did Yannick. Two wonderful swims from the outside lanes.”
In the 100 back, junior Jack Murfee placed third in a school-record time of 46.69. Freshman Luke Papendick was fifth (47.20), while seniors Matt Murray (47.42) and Brady Fox (47.80) were sixth and seventh, respectively.
Papendick (46.96), Murray (47.13) and Fox's (47.45) prelims times from the morning now stand as the third, fourth and fifth marks on UVa's all-time list.
“I’m thrilled for Jack,” Bernardino said. “From day one of his freshman year, he’s been saying, ‘I want to hold that school record, I want my name up on the board at UVa.’ What a terrific swim he had. He laid it all on the line on the first 50 (yards), hit an explosive third turn and his last three strokes were exceptional.”
The 400 medley relay team of Papendick, Kaeser, Murray and sophomore Charlie Rommel finished fifth in a time of 3:11.42.
Murray finished eighth in the 100 fly in 47.55, while Fox was third in the consolation final in 47.98.
The action concludes Saturday (March 2) with the 1,650 free, 200 back, 100 free, 200 breast and 200 fly events being contested. Prelims begin at 11 a.m., 1,650 free heats start at 5 p.m. (except fastest heat) and the finals are slated for a 7 p.m. start.