Jan. 31, 2014
ANNAPOLIS, Md. -- Victories in 10 events powered the Navy men's swimming and diving team to a 157-140 win over Columbia Friday afternoon at Lejeune Hall in Annapolis. Seven different Mids (7-4) won an individual event on the day against the Lions (5-3).
"It was a good team victory, for a lot of reasons," said Navy head coach Bill Roberts. "It was our last dual meet of the season and came against a very good Columbia team that is competitive within the Ivy league and who beat us pretty handily last year. So it was good to rebound from last year's meet."
The meet began with Navy winning the 200 medley relay with a time of 1:29.84. That gave the `A' relay team a 3.31-second margin of victory over both Columbia's `A' foursome and the `B' relay squad for the Mids (the teams tied for second place with identical times of 1:33.15).
"We got out to an early lead," said Roberts of the relay, "and in a short event it is hard to come from behind to win the race. But the rest of our guys were able to drop times from what they had done in recent weeks. All in all, it wasn't just one swimmer, it was a lot of swimmers."
Tom Duvall (So., Durham, N.H.) followed with a 5.6-second win in the 1000 free with his clocking of 9:22.35. Placing second in the event was Duvall's teammate, Alex Nickell (So., Loveland, Colo.).
After Columbia earned its first win if the meet thanks to a 1:40.96 effort by Terry Li in the 200 free, Joe Lane (Fr., Durham, N.H.) won the 100 back for Navy with his time of 50.65. The Mids promptly built a cushion for themselves as Sean Murphy (Sr., Hudson, Ohio) led a 1-2-3 finish for Navy with his winning time of 54.79 in the 100 breast.
Columbia would win three of the next four events before Conor Campbell
(Sr., Manassas, Va.) won the 200 back for Navy with his time of 1:50.16 and Luke Hoffer
(Sr., Chapel Hill, N.C.), Murphy and Marlin Brutkiewicz
(Fr., Mobile, Ala.) placed first (2:01.94), second (2:02.00) and third (2:04.17), respectively, in the 200 breaststroke.
"This week, Marlin has been really good," said Roberts. "He has won a lot of races, not today, but through this week and his times are coming along real well."
Navy would close the meet with victories in three of the remaining five events. Duvall won the 500 free in a time of 4:32.50, Ben Freedman (Sr., Kennewick, Wash.) won the one-meter diving event with a score of 310.95 and Navy touched the wall first in the 400 free relay with a clocking of 3:04.64.
"I think every coach wants to end on a good note," said Roberts, of closing out the dual meet season with a win. "It is no indication of how you will do in a few weeks (at the championship meets), but you still want to end on a good note. Where we are now compared to where we were a year ago at this time, there is no comparison. I feel good about that, but we are not going to let that in our minds and work hard to have better things happen."
Both Navy teams will be back in Lejeune Hall Saturday at Noon for the Navy Invite. The additional teams competing at the open event are American, Army, Bucknell, Lafayette, Lehigh, Shippensburg and the senior group from the Naval Academy Aquatics Club.
After tomorrow, Navy will sets its sights firmly on the championship portion of its season. The Mids will play host to both the Patriot League Championship (Feb. 19-22) and the ECAC Championship (Feb. 28-March 2). Tickets for both are available through the Navy Ticket Office at either 1-800-US4-NAVY or NavySports.com.