Swim Bears to Compete in Sun Belt Conference Championship
The Missouri State men's swimming and diving team will compete in its first ever Sun Belt Conference Championship, Thurs.-Sat., Feb. 15-17, in Nashville, Tenn.
The Bears have been the Missouri Valley Invitational champions for the last two years, defeating conference rival Southern Illinois for the title. The Salukis, along with Evansville, have also joined the Sun Belt Conference this season. Other league members include Denver, Florida Atlantic and Western Kentucky. The Sun Belt added men's swimming in 2005 and Western Kentucky has won the title both years.
Missouri State is 3-2 with Sun Belt schools this season, losing to SIU in the first meet of the season, and Denver on January 6. The Bears defeated Florida Atlantic on Jan. 3, in Florida, Evansville on Jan. 19 in Indiana, and won a rematch with SIU on Jan. 20, in the last meet of the regular season.
The Bears return five conference champions from the 2005-06 invitational including, Ignacio Gayo (200 free relay, 50 free, 400 medley relay, 800 free relay), Seth Johnson (400 medley relay), Greg Temple (100 breast, 200 breast), J.R. Pyle (800 free relay) and Eduardo Pajares (800 free relay).
Seniors Temple and Johnson sit at the top of the Sun Belt's season best list in the 100- and 200-yard breaststrokes. Temple recorded a time of 56.67 in the 100 breast at the Delta State Invitational and Johnson posted a time of 2:02.05 at the same meet in the 200 breast. Sophomore Pajares also holds a top time in the Sun Belt for his final time of 4:00.03 in the 400 IM at Southern Illinois.