Feb. 24, 2012
IOWA CITY, Iowa -- University of Iowa swimmers Ryan Phelan, Duncan Partridge, Gianni Sesto and Paul Gordon were crowned Big Ten Champions in the 200-free relay at Friday's finals session of the 2012 Big Ten Championships. The Hawkeyes set two school records Friday night and sit in fourth place on the leaderboard.
Phelan, Partridge, Sesto and Gordon posted an NCAA `A' cut time of 1:17.61 in the 200-free relay, which is a new school record. The squad's time ranks fourth all-time in Big Ten history. The quartet was the first Iowa 200 free relay team in 17 years to be crowned Big Ten Champions. The last relay team to win the event consisted of Krzysztof Cwalina, Tim Schulle, Jim Mulligan and Rafal Szukala and was set in 1995 with a time of 1:19.69. Gordon was the only swimmer in the entire event to post a split time under 19 seconds. He anchored the relay in a split time of 18.84.
"The relay was a special race and a special anchor leg with Paul Gordon and the whole thing put together," said Head Coach Marc Long. "We got an `A' NCAA cut and it was very exciting and a great way to kick off tonight's meet."
Sophomore Tyler Lentz posted a new school record in the 400 IM during the morning preliminaries with a time of 3:47.65. The previous record was set in 1986 by John Davey with a time of 3:47.88. Lentz's time marks an NCAA provisional cut time. He went on to place fifth at finals (3:49.02). Kyle Noser earned points for the Hawkeyes in the event with 12th place finish and NCAA `B' qualifying time of 3:50.59. Patrick Wegiand (3:58.09) and Donny Warren (3:57.42) competed in the `C' final of the event.
Byron Butler competed in the consolation final of the 100 fly. He posted a collegiate best time of 47.49, which ranks second all-time in Iowa history and is an NCAA provisional cut time. Mitch Taylor swam in the `C' final of the event and touched the wall in 49.42 seconds. He recorded a collegiate best time of 49.13 during preliminaries.
Iowa had two swimmers represented in the championship heat of the 200 free. Gordon and Jordan Huff placed third and fifth with times of 1:35.36 and 1:36.07, respectively. Huff earned a collegiate best time of 1:35.87 at the morning preliminaries. Sesto competed in the `C' final of the event and posted a time of 1:38.96.
Andrew Marciniak and Korey Schneider participated in the `C' final of the 100 breast. Marciniak posted a collegiate best time of 54.89, which ranks third in school history and is an NCAA `B' qualifying time. Schneider's time of 55.16 marked a collegiate best time and ranks fifth all-time in Iowa school history.
Grant Betulius ended the third day of competition with a fifth place finish in the 100 back. He posted a time of 47.30. His best time of 47.17, which he posted at Thursday night's finals leading off the 400-medley relay was a new school record. Dustin Rhoads and Butler competed in the consolation finals heat of the event and finished 11th (47.69) and 12th (48.46), respectively.
Diver Osvel Molina competed in the consolation final of the three-meter springboard. Molina posted a collegiate best score of 340.80 during the preliminary round and went on to place sixteen overall with a score of 287.45.
"It's just nice to be talking about being in the team race," added Long. "We've got to come out strong tomorrow morning and put ourselves in a scoring position and we have another fun relay tomorrow night. It really has to happen in the morning to put ourselves in scoring position at night."
Iowa currently sits in fourth place in the team standings with 274 points. Michigan leads the team race with 516.5 points, followed by Ohio State (380) and Indiana (369) in second and third, respectively.
The Championships conclude Saturday with morning preliminaries beginning at 11 a.m. Saturday's finals will follow at 6:30 p.m.