2018 Men’s NCAA Championships: Day 2 Finals Live Recap


We are back! It’s been a record-setting first two sessions of men’s NCAAs, and tonight’s six event finals should prove no different.

The headliner, as always, is Caeleb Dressel‘s continuing assault on the concept of impossibility. The Florida Gator went 18.11 for the fastest 50 free in history this morning, and will look to finish his NCAA Championships career undefeated in this event. He’s got Olympian Ryan Held and breakout Minnesota star Bowe Becker in his rearview mirror heading into the final.

It was a fast 200 IM prelims, with Andrew Seliskar moving to #7 all-time while taking the top spot in 1:40.40. He’ll look to hold off last year’s co-champ Mark Szaranek along with a whole host of top competitors – Stanford’s Abrahm Devine and NC State’s Andreas Vazaios were both sub-1:41 this morning.

In the 500 free, Felix Auboeck of Michigan is the top qualifier, with NC State’s Anton Ipsen and 2016 NCAA champ and U.S. Olympian Townley Haas lurking behind him.

The relays might be the most interesting. Cal leads the 200 free relay, but only by a tenth over NC State, with Florida (and 17-second man Dressel) only two more tenths back. The 400 medley won’t see three-time defending champs Texas in the A final (they were 9th this morning), but Indiana is the early leader, followed by a pair of teams who could make significant lineup adjustments going into tonight: NC State and Cal.

Plus we’ve got diving, where Purdue’s Steele Johnson looks to defend his national title on 1-meter, but Michael Hixon is the leader after the morning rounds.

Keep refreshing this page for live, event-by-event updates of all the action from Minneapolis. And stay tuned to @SwimSwamLive on Twitter for even more up-to-the-second coverage.


  • NCAA Record: 1:14.08, Auburn, 2009
  • American Record: 1:15.26, Stanford, 2011
  • U.S. Open Record: 1:14.08, Auburn, 2009
  • 2017 NCAA Champion: Texas (1:14.59)

Top 8 Finishers:

  1. Florida – 1:14.39
  2. NC State – 1:14.50
  3. Cal – 1:14.56
  4. Texas – 1:15.27
  5. USC – 1:15.72
  6. Stanford – 1:16.23
  7. Florida State – 1:16.23
  8. Michigan – 1:16.30

The biggest fireworks came at the beginning, with Caeleb Dressel shattering perhaps the most hallowed barrier in swimming: 18 seconds in a 50 free. Dressel led off in an insane 17.81, staking Florida to such a massive lead that no other team could come back, even as only one of Florida’s remaining swimmers broke 19. Dressel’s time annihilates the American, NCAA and U.S. Open records and makes him the fastest in history by seven tenths of a second.

Florida would hang on to win the relay in 1:14.39, holding off a surging NC State by just over a tenth. Jan Switkowski was 18.52, Enzo Martinez-Scarpe 19.00 and Mark Szaranek 19.06.

NC State roared home in 1:14.50, getting an 18.56 leadoff from Ryan Held with straight 18s on splits: Justin Ress was 18.31, Jacob Molacek 18.67 and Coleman Stewart 18.96. That team set a new American record, beating the 1:15.26 put up by Stanford back in 2011.

Cal wound up third, getting an 18.36 from fab freshman Ryan Hoffer and a pair of 18.5s out of Pawel Sendyk and Michael Jensen. Justin Lynch led off in 19.05 as Cal went 1:14.56.

Texas took fourth back at 1:15.27. Tate Jackson looked solid after a rough morning, splitting 18.67. John Shebat was 18.72, Joseph Schooling 18.76 and Brett Ringgold led off in 19.12.

USC got an 18.6 from Dylan Carter to place 5th.

In the B final, Indiana roared back to the win late in 1:16.31, getting a split of 18.83 from Bruno Blaskovic and an 18.88 from Blake Pieroni.

The second place finish leaves NC State in control of the meet with 74 points, but Florida has now surged to second with 70. Texas is third, eight points back, with Cal at 58 and Indiana at 52.

500 FREESTYLE – Finals

Top 8 finishers:

  1. Townley Haas, Texas – 4:08.60
  2. Felix Auboeck, Michigan – 4:09.03
  3. Anton Ipsen, NC State – 4:09.13
  4. Grant Shoults, Stanford – 4:10.02
  5. Akaram Mahmoud, South Carolina – 4:12.14
  6. Sam Pomajevich, Texas – 4:12.83
  7. Liam Egan, Stanford – 4:14.49
  8. Ricardo Vargas, Michigan – 4:17.23

Texas’s Townley Haas led the entire way, but things started to look bleak with about 150 to go. The field started to charge on Haas – first Michigan’s Felix Auboeckthen NC State’s Anton Ipsenthen Stanford’s Grant ShoultsBut Haas suddenly surged home in 23.94 to hang on for the win, his second NCAA 500 free title in three years.

Auboeck finished second in 4:09.03, closing hard and holding off NC State’s Ipsenwho was 23.8 over the final 50 yards. Shoults looked like the hard-charger through the last couple hundreds, but just ran out of pool, finishing fourth in 4:10.02.

South Carolina’s Akaram Mahmoud was 4:12.14 from an outside lane, taking 5th. Texas freshman Sam Pomajevich surged out front early, but couldn’t hold his early speed the way Haas could, fading to 6th in 4:12.83. Liam Egan of Stanford and Ricardo Vargas of Michigan rounded out the A final.

The B final went to Louisville’s Marcelo Acosta in 4:11.61, winning his heat by more than two seconds.

Texas’s big event of the day pushed them to the points lead with 95, but NC State is just 5 back. Stanford rockets up to third at 75, with Florida sitting fourth, Michigan fifth and Cal sixth. The top seven teams have been extremely volatile in place so far – it’s still very early, but things are setting up to be a multi-team barnburner for at least a few days.

200 IM – Finals

Top 8 finishers:

  1. Jan Switkowski, Florida – 1:39.54
  2. Andreas Vazaios, NC State – 1:39.97
  3. Mark Szaranek, Florida – 1:40.27
  4. Abrahm Devine, Stanford – 1:40.35
  5. Andrew Seliskar, Cal – 1:40.69
  6. Vini Lanza, Indiana – 1:40.82
  7. Gunnar Bentz, Georgia – 1:41.89
  8. Ian Finnerty, Indiana – 1:44.25

The 200 IM was a thrilling four-way race in the middle lanes. In fact, the top four were separated by just two tenths at the 100 mark. Florida’s Jan Switkowski had the late fire, though, blasting a field-best 24.0 free split to snag the win in 1:39.54. That makes him the third-fastest in history and just the third man ever under 1:40.

Meanwhile NC State’s Andreas Vazaios also broke that barrier, going 1:39.97 for silver. Last year’s co-champion Mark Szaranek was third in 1:40.27. He actually dropped four tenths of a second from last year and fell backwards two places.

Stanford’s Abrahm Devine fought off Cal’s Andrew Seliskar for fourth, 1:40.35 to 1:40.69. In fact, the entire top 5 at one point joined the top 10 fastest performers in history, including Seliskar’s 1:40.40 from this morning which then sat 7th, and is now in 11th place.

Indiana’s Vini Lanza also broke 1:41, going 1:40.82. Georgia’s Gunnar Bentz was seventh and Indiana’s Ian Finnerty 8th.

Cal’s Matt Josa ran away with the B final, avenging a DQ in this event last season with a 1:41.66.

Though Florida scored big in this event, NC State still leads the team points with 107, one above the Gators. Texas is at 99 with Cal at 91, Stanford at 90 and Indiana at 76.

50 FREE – Finals

Top 8 finishers:

  1. Caeleb Dressel, Florida – 17.63
  2. Ryan Held, NC State – 18.64
  3. Bowe Becker, Minnesota – 18.90
  4. Pawel Sendyk, Cal – 18.94
  5. Zach Apple, Auburn / Ryan Hoffer, Cal – 18.97
  6. Robert Howard, Alabama – 19.09
  7. Blake Pieroni, Indiana – 19.17

The only thing better than witnessing history is witnessing it twice.

Spectators of tonight’s meet got to see perhaps the most impressive night of short course swimming in world history, as Florida’s Caeleb Dressel re-lowered his own American record, going 17.63 to become the first man ever under 18 seconds in a flat start 50 free – twice in one day.

Dressel’s 17.63 takes two tenths off his already-insane 17.81 leading off the relay earlier and only cements what swimming fans have been thinking since at least this meet last year – Dressel is a generational talent and the greatest yards swimmer in history.

NC State’s Ryan Held was 18.64, still one of the fastest times in history and was a full second behind. Minnesota’s Bowe Becker thrilled the home crowd with an 18.90 for bronze, and six of the top 8 broke 19 seconds.

Cal’s Pawel Sendyk was 18.94 and Auburn’s’ Zach Apple tied with Ryan Hoffer of Cal for fifth at 18.97. The only two above 19 in the heat were Robert Howard and Blake Pieroni.

Dressel’s former club teammate Santo Condorelli won the B final, going 18.99 for USC.

NC State remains in the lead narrowly – they are 5 points up on Florida and 8.5 ahead of Cal. Texas is now 22 points back and Stanford is 41 back in 5th place.

1 meter Diving – Final

Top 8 finishers:

  1. Michael Hixon, Indiana – 464.40
  2. Steele Johnson, Purdue – 443.85
  3. James Connor, Indiana – 440.55
  4. Colin Zeng, Tennessee – 437.70
  5. Jordan Windle, Texas – 412.80
  6. Sam Thornton, A&M – 407.45
  7. Juan Hernandez, LSU – 391.10
  8. Grayson Campbell, Texas – 387.45

Indiana’s Michael Hixon topped defending champ Steele Johnson of Purdue on the 1-meter board. Hixon’s teammate James Connor was third as Indiana picked up a huge haul of points.

Tennessee’s Colin Zeng took fourth in his NCAA debut for his new team, after starting his career with Ohio State. Texas’s duo of Jordan Windle and Grayson Campbell took 5th and 8th in a solid event for the Longhorns.

That put the Longhorns into the points lead for the first time, 10 ahead of NC State and 12 ahead of Indiana. Florida is 15 back and Cal 18.5 back in what’s been a thrilling team points race so far.

400 MEDLEY RELAY – Finals

  • NCAA record: 2:59.22, Texas, 2017
  • American record: 3:01.51, California, 2017
  • U.S. Open record: 2:59.22, Texas, 2017
  • 2017 NCAA Champion: Texas (2:59.22)

Top 8 finishers:

  1. Indiana – 3:01.07
  2. NC State – 3:01.76
  3. USC – 3:01.83
  4. Cal – 3:02.83
  5. Florida – 3:03.16
  6. Stanford – 3:04.16
  7. Louisville – 3:04.37
  8. Georgia – 3:04.50

Indiana defended its top spot, going 3:01.07 for the NCAA title in a blowout win. Gabiel Fantoni was 45.59 on back, keeping IU in the hunt. Ian Finnerty came off a rough 200 IM to uncork a 50.33 breaststroke split that beat everyone else in the field, including American record-holder Caeleb Dresselwho swam breast for Florida.

Vini Lanza was 44.53 on fly and Blake Pieroni anchored in a field-best 40.62, holding off a stiff charge from NC State’s Justin Ress (40.82) to cap the win.

NC State ended up second, getting the field’s best splits in the two strokes IU didn’t. Coleman Stewart switched to back after swimming fly this morning. He went 44.74 to earn the early lead for the Wolfpack. Jacob Molacek was 52.32 on breast – actually slower than the 52.08 from Daniel Graber this morning. NC State did use all-star sprinters Ryan Held and Ress on the relay, getting a field-best 43.88 fly leg out of Held and that 40.82 from Ress on free. NC State was 3:01.76, but will now have to leave those two off of one of the two remaining relays – likely the 200 medley tomorrow.

USC took third, challenging for the lead during fly with a 44.71 split from Dylan Carter. Santo Condorelli went out in 18.9 to his feet on the free leg, but fell off to a 41.2 split as the Trojans finished in 3:01.83. Carsten Vissering was 50.90 on breast and Ralf Tribuntsov led off in 45.01, a hundredth slower than Robert Glinta was this morning.

Cal finished fourth overall, getting a 50.87 from Connor Hoppe and a 41.4 anchor from freshman Ryan Hoffer. Behind them, Florida shook up its order to get a 50.62 breaststroke from Dressel and a 44.1 fly from Jan Switkowski to go 3:03.16.

Stanford took 6th (Andrew Liang was 44.8 on fly and Sam Perry 41.6 on free), Louisville seventh and Georgia eighth.

In the B final, Texas held onto its 9th place spot, going 3:03.56 by swapping out backstroker John Shebat for Austin Katz. The freshman Katz was 45.1, a half-second faster than Shebat was this morning. Flyer Joseph Schooling was 44.3 on his split.

Team Score Update

It’s been a back-and-forth session in team points, but Indiana finished with the lead thanks to huge points from the final two events. IU is four ahead of NC State, with Texas ten back, Florida 15 back and Cal 16.5 back. Those 5 should have their biggest tests tomorrow morning, with 5 individual swimming events, 1 relay and 1 diving event on the docket.

Men - Team Rankings - Through Event 7                       
  1. Indiana                           169   2. NC State                          165
  3. Texas                             159   4. Florida                           154
  5. California                      152.5   6. Stanford                          116
  7. Southern California                79   8. Michigan                           70
  9. Georgia                            64  10. Louisville                         62
 11. Auburn                           40.5  12. Alabama                            38
 13. Tennessee                          35  14. Harvard                            29
 15. Arizona St                         28  16. Florida St                         24
 17. South Carolina                     20  18. Texas A&M                          19
 19. Arizona                            18  19. Missouri                           18
 19. Purdue                             18  22. Minnesota                          16
 23. Lsu                                12  24. Notre Dame                         10
 25. Virginia Tech                       9  26. Ohio St                             6
 26. Denver                              6  28. Penn State                          5
 29. Duke                                4  30. Virginia                            2
 30. Iowa                                2

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3 years ago

Go bears!

Sgo Bears
Reply to  calswimfan
3 years ago

I agree

Reply to  My Predictions:
3 years ago

excellent well written poll – i enjoyed filling it in

Reply to  My Predictions:
3 years ago

Is there any place to see the percent of people that said what?

3 years ago

IU takes the 4 Med in 3:00.3

Reply to  Stankgal
3 years ago

Oh yeah ?

3 years ago

Let’s get everyone excited!
When I say WOLF you say PACK.


Tammy Touchpad Error
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3 years ago


samuel huntington
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3 years ago


Steve Nolan
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3 years ago


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3 years ago

ram Alpha

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3 years ago


war eagle
Reply to  200 SIDESTROKE B CUT
3 years ago


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3 years ago

I’m a ?

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3 years ago

-full of swimming!

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3 years ago

-gang Amadeus Mozart

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3 years ago


Reply to  #STATEment
3 years ago

How about When I say CAELEB, you say DRESSEL

3 years ago

*insert popcorn emoji*

Reply to  200 SIDESTROKE B CUT
3 years ago


Caeleb Dressel Will Win 8 Gold Medals in Tokyo
3 years ago

Going to the arena now. Can’t wait to see!

3 years ago

will finals be free to watch like this morning? or does someone have a link they can share?

3 years ago

Sadly won’t get to watch live as I leave for Minneapolis as the meet starts :/ bright side I get to see it in person the next two days!

About Jared Anderson

Jared Anderson

Jared Anderson swam for nearly twenty years. Then, Jared Anderson stopped swimming and started writing about swimming. He's not sick of swimming yet. Swimming might be sick of him, though. Jared was a YMCA and high school swimmer in northern Minnesota, and spent his college years swimming breaststroke and occasionally pretending …

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