Swimming and diving's Grier named second team All-Big Ten

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- The Penn State men’s swimming and diving team concluded the 2013 Big Ten Championships on Saturday (March 2) evening, finishing in eighth place with a total of 212 points. Following Michigan winning its third consecutive conference title, junior Sean Grier (Hummelstown, Pa.) was named Second Team All-Big Ten for the second straight year. The Nittany Lions (5-2, 0-1) will now begin preparing for the 2013 NCAA Championships, which will take place in Indianapolis from March 28-30.

Along with Grier earning Big Ten honors, senior Jeff Gomez (Morristown, N.J.) was named a Big Ten Sportsmanship Award Honoree. Gomez competed in the 200 back during Saturday’s competition, taking 18th place in the C Final with a time of 1:46.17. It was a season-best for the senior, as well as his first NCAA B cut of the season. Grier recorded a B cut of his own in the 200 back, swimming a personal best time of 1:45.54 in the preliminaries.

Leading the Lions in the 1,650 free, sophomore Nick Ankosko (East Brunswick, N.J.) took 10th with a season-best time of 15:06.98. It was the second B cut in the event for the sophomore. Ankosko led Will Lee (Hershey, Pa.) and junior Chris Cipolla (South River, N.J.), who took 29th (15:47.26) and 31st (15:50.27) place, respectively. Lee’s time was a personal best for the rookie.

Sophomore Nate Savoy (Reading, Pa.) earned his first NCAA A cut of the season in the 200 back, leading the Lions with a third-place finish in the A Final. Savoy recorded a personal best time of 1:40.69 in the finals, and earned an A cut in the preliminaries with a time of 1:41.03, as well. Also competing in the C Final with Gomez, junior Thomas Mershon (Malvern, Pa.) and sophomore Ryan Magee (Chestnut Ridge, N.Y.) followed each other in 22nd and 23rd place, respectively. Mershon recorded a season-best time of 1:47.39 in the preliminaries, and went on to finish with 1:48.37 in the finals. Recording a personal best time of 1:47.56 in the prelims, Magee swam a time of 1:48.63 in the finals. Additionally, freshman Kevin Glenn (Matthews, N.C) swam a personal best time of 1:47.88 for 29th place in the preliminaries.

Notching two of Penn State’s 11 NCAA qualifying performances, junior John Hauser (Pottstown, Pa.) took 11th place in the B Final of the 100 free with a personal best time of 43.85. Hauser’s second B Cut was recorded in the preliminaries, as he swam a time of 44.06. Junior Andrew Sideras (Philadelphia) and freshman Matt Grillo (Montreal, Quebec) each swam their personal best performances in the 100 free, with Sideras recording a time of 44.65 in the preliminaries. The junior finished 21st (44.95) in the finals, leading Grillo in 22nd place with a personal best time of 44.96.

Rounding out the Lions’ top performances, junior Matt Salig (Downingtown, Pa.) swam a season-best time of 1:46.40 in the 200 fly preliminaries, earning a NCAA B cut. Salig went on to place 12th in the B Final, earning a second B cut with a time of 1:47.05. Sophomore Kyle Madley (Madison, N.J.) also exceeded NCAA standards in the prelims, earning a B Cut with a personal best time of 1:47.90. The Maryland transfer went on to finish 19th in the C Final with a time of 1:48.24. Also qualifying for the finals, freshman Jon Seiferth (Allison Park, Pa.) took 20th with a personal best time of 1:48.80, while junior Seth Wensel (Christiansburg, Va.) placed 23rd (1:50.23). Wensel set new personal best record in the preliminaries, swimming a time of 1:49.21.

Junior Shane Austin competed in the 100 free, as well, swimming a time of 44.32 for 22nd in the preliminaries. Austin led sophomore Jeff Young (Hershey, Pa.) in 37th (45.06), freshman Andrew Eiken (Naperville, Ill.) in 56th (46.11) and junior Peter Fittin (Sea Girt, N.J.) in 58th (46.19), all of whom swam their personal best times in the event. In the 200 breast, Cipolla led the Lions with a 26th-place showing in the preliminaries, swimming a time of 2:00.84. Following the junior, sophomore Jonathan Ekstrom (Silver Spring, Md.) finished in 29th with 2:01.77, junior James Wilson (Nottingham, Pa.) took 31st with 2:02.54, freshman Max Byers (Glen Carbon, Ill.) took 34th with 2:04.25 and Lee finished in 36th with a time of 2:05.18. Ekstrom, Wilson, Byers and Lee all recorded their personal best times in the event.

Penn State’s final event was the 400 free relay, where the squad of Hauser, Grier, Savoy and Austin took fifth place. Their time of 2:54.50 was a season-best, and proved to be another NCAA B cut performance.

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Last Updated March 08, 2013