Bears fall to No. 20 Iowa, (RV) Notre Dame and Northwestern; Wrap up final session with a pair of second-place finishes and victory in the 200 back
Feb. 2, 2013
EVANSTON, Ill. - Although the Missouri State men's swimming & diving program came out of the weekend with three losses, the Bears certainly benefited from the stiff competition they encountered at the Northwestern Dual Invitational. During Saturday's third and final session at the Norris Aquatic Center, the Bears recorded a pair of second-place finishes and another individual victory by way of Paul Le.
"I was very pleased with the effort our athletes put forth this weekend," head coach Dave Collins said. "We asked them to step up and compete against great competition and they did a great job of racing all weekend."
Sophomore diver Garrett Nevels once again positioned himself in the lead pack, this time in the 3-meter diving competition. Nevels was one of four athletes to break the 300-point plateau and for the second time this weekend, he finished as runner-up.
Adding to his breakout swim in the 500 free on Friday, freshman newcomer Miguel Davila set the tone early for the Bears in the mile. With a time of 15:39.92, Davila placed second overall and climbed to No. 1 on the Bears' and MAC top times list. In addition, the native of Ibague, Colombia likely secured the top seed for the mile at conference in March with his 1000 split on Saturday (9:24.91).
Missouri State gained more momentum with the 200 backstroke as sophomore standout Paul Le picked up his second victory of the weekend. He touched the wall at 1:46.97, giving him another season best for the 2012-13 season. Joining Le in the top six was junior Yuri Garanito (1:50.29) in fifth and senior Daan Jansen (1:51.94) in sixth. Jansen's time in the event also marked a season best.
The 100 free proved to be a difficult event for the Bears, as sophomore Vitalii Baryshok was the only MSU swimmer to finish in the top 10. Baryshok finished seventh with his time of 45.85 and rounding out the Bears' scorers were McKnight (46.65) and Kalnins (46.69) in 13th and 14th, respectively.
Freshman Isaac Springer led the charge in the 200 breaststroke, finishing sixth overall (2:04.41).
In the final individual event, Missouri State was able to sneak sophomore Matthew Wilson into the top 5. Only .22 seconds separated third through sixth and Wilson placed fourth overall in the shuffle with his time of 1:51.33.
To conclude the weekend, the quartet of Le, Baryshok, Kalnins and McKnight clocked in at 3:03.30 in the 400 free relay, which was the fourth fastest time.
"We have really developed and grown as a unit during the dual meet part of the season and I feel we will be very happy with our results at the conference meet," Collins added.
The Bears will now have a month off from competition as they prepare for the 2013 Mid-American Conference Championships, which will be held in Carbondale, Ill., March 7-9.
No. 20 Iowa - 246
Missouri State - 122
Northwestern - 200.5
Missouri State - 167.5
(RV) Notre Dame - 210
Missouri State - 160