Minneapolis – The Gustavus men’s swimming and diving team registered 178 points on day three to finish in third place with a total of 570 points at the 2012 MIAC Swimming Diving Championships held at the Aquatic Center on the campus of the University of Minnesota. With a three-day total 765 points, St. Thomas barely edged second place St. Olaf who tallied 762 points to take the 2012 crown, its second in two years. The Gusties have placed inside the top-three the past four seasons.
“The guys had to step up and they really did,” said Head Coach Jon Carlson. “That pushed us into what I call the “Abyss,” where we were too far away from second to make a run and also too far away from fourth for anybody to make a run on us. The team swam great and I was very pleased with their performance. It was a good way for our seniors to go out.”
The Gustie men recorded a total of eight finishes inside the top-eight on day three.
Senior Billy Schultze (Mankato, Minn) went out with a bang in what was the final conference meet of his career, finishing runner-up in the 200 breaststroke after touching the wall in 2:07.78. Schultze’s top-seeded time of 2:05.59 in the prelims earlier this morning was fast enough that it broke his own school record set in 2011.
Freshman Zac Solis (Centennial, Colo.) also made the podium with a third place performance in the 200 backstroke with a mark of 1:53.63. Zolis met the NCAA B cut standard in the race.
Other notables included sophomore Sam Hanson (Minnetonka, Minn.), sophomore Elliot Hoekstra (Mendota Heights, Minn.), senior Zach Nachtsheim (Shoreview, Minn.), sophomore Sam Olson-Anstett (Shoreview, Minn.), and senior Ben Stewart (Burnsville, Min.).
Hanson turned in Gustavus’ best performance of the group by taking fourth place in the three-meter diving competition, scoring a 387.25, a career-best.
In individual swims, Hoekstra finished fifth in the 200 breaststroke with a time of 2:08.72. Nachtsheim and Olson-Anstett both recorded seventh place marks in their respective events. Nachtsheim went 46.77 in the 100 free, while Olson-Anstett touched up in 1:59.47. Stewart rounded out the group in eighth place after swimming a 17:01.78 in the 1,650 free.
The meet was brought to a close with the 400-free relay team of freshman Kurt Youngdahl (Wayzata, Minn.), Nachtsheim, Stewart and Schultze taking fifth place with a time of 3:87.25.
The 2012 MIAC Swimming and Diving Championship home page has complete details from the three-day event, including results, recaps, photo galleries and more.