Duke Swimming and Diving head to the Nike Cup Invite

The Blue Devil swimmers and divers will wrap up fall competition this weekend, making the short trip to Chapel Hill, N.C., to take part in North Carolina’s annual Janis Hape Dowd Nike Cup Invitational. The three-day meet runs Thursday, Nov. 20 to Saturday, Nov. 22 at the Tar Heels’ Koury Natatorium, with preliminaries set for 9:30 a.m. each day and finals for 5:30 p.m.

Strong Field Awaits at Nike Cup
A total of eight schools will be represented at this weekend’s meet, with Duke joining Tennessee, Navy, Air Force, NC State, East Carolina, Old Dominion and host North Carolina in Chapel Hill. The field includes three ranked men’s teams in No. 6 NC State, No. 9 North Carolina and No. 14 Tennessee, and three ranked women’s squads, including the eighth-ranked Volunteers, 14th-ranked Tar Heels and 20th-ranked Wolfpack.

Recapping the 2013 Nike Cup
The 2013 Nike Cup Invitational saw Duke swimmers and divers register seven first-place finishes, set two program records and achieve 15 NCAA ‘B’ cuts and 17 NCAA Zone Diving Championship qualifying marks. The Blue Devil women finished fourth out of seven squads in the final standings while the men also took fourth out of six teams.

Individually, 2014 graduate Christine Wixted broke meet and school records in the 100 and 200-yard breaststroke and classmate Nick McCrory swept the three men’s diving events.

Last Time Out
The Duke men and women combined for a 6-0 ledger in their last outing two weeks ago, notching victories over William & Mary, Old Dominion and St. Andrews University. Sophomore Bradley Cline turned in three first-place finishes to lead the Blue Devil men against the Tribe and set a pool record at Old Dominion in the 200 freestyle. Classmate Peter Kropp swept both breaststroke events against the Monarchs and St. Andrews and also had a pair of facility records, as did Kaz Takabayashi in the 100 backstroke.

On the women’s side, Jessie Sutherland, Ashleigh Shanley, Leah Goldman and Maddie Rusch eclipsed Old Dominion’s pool record in the 200 medley relay with Sutherland (100 backstroke) and Rusch (100 butterfly) adding facility record-breaking performances individually. Freshman Isabella Paez also broke a pool record in the 200 butterfly at the double dual.

A Look at Duke
Kropp enters the weekend ranked second in the ACC and sixth nationally in the 100 breaststroke with his season-best time of 54.18. He also ranks among the conference leaders in the 200 breaststroke (2:00.61) while fellow sophomore Takabayashi is ninth in the ACC in the 100 backstroke (49.61). The Blue Devils’ 200 medley relay clocked the league’s fourth-fastest mark so far this year at 1:28.65 and will look to improve upon that time this weekend in Chapel Hill.

Freshman Verity Abel sits 11th in the ACC in the 1,000 freestyle (10:09.49) and classmate Paez is 12th in the 200 butterfly (2:00.23). The women’s 200 medley relay of Sutherland, Shanley, Goldman and Rusch comes in at eighth in the conference (1:43.80) with a chance to drop time this weekend at the Nike Cup Invitational.

Nike Cup Schedule of Events

Thursday, Nov. 20

Women’s 200-Yard Freestyle Relay
Men’s 200-Yard Freestyle Relay
Women’s 500-Yard Freestyle
Men’s 500-Yard Freestyle
Women’s 200-Yard Individual Medley
Men’s 200-Yard Individual Medley
Women’s 3-Meter Diving
Men’s 1-Meter Diving
Women’s 400-Yard Medley Relay
Men’s 400-Yard Medley Relay

Friday, Nov. 21

Women’s 200-Yard Medley Relay
Men’s 200-Yard Medley Relay
Women’s 400-Yard Individual Medley
Men’s 400-Yard Individual Medley
Women’s 100-Yard Butterfly
Men’s 100-Yard Butterfly
Women’s 200-Yard Freestyle
Men’s 200-Yard Freestyle
Women’s 100-Yard Breaststroke
Men’s 100-Yard Breaststroke
Women’s 100-Yard Backstroke
Men’s 100-Yard Backstroke
Women’s 1-Meter Diving
Men’s 3-Meter Diving
Women’s 800-Yard Freestyle Relay
Men’s 800-Yard Freestyle Relay

Saturday, Nov. 22

Women’s 1650-Yard Freestyle
Men’s 1650-Yard Freestyle
Women’s 200-Yard Backstroke
Men’s 200-Yard Backstroke
Women’s 100-Yard Freestyle
Men’s 100-Yard Freestyle
Women’s 200-Yard Breaststroke
Men’s 200-Yard Breaststroke
Women’s 200-Yard Butterfly
Men’s 200-Yard Butterfly
10-Meter Platform Diving (competed at Duke Aquatics Center)
Women’s 400-Yard Freestyle Relay
Men’s 400-Yard Freestyle Relay

College Swimming News courtesy of Duke. 

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About Gold Medal Mel Stewart

Gold Medal Mel Stewart

MEL STEWART Jr., aka Gold Medal Mel, won three Olympic medals at the 1992 Olympic Games. Mel's best event was the 200 butterfly. He is a former World, American, and NCAA Record holder in the 200 butterfly. As a writer/producer and sports columnist, Mel has contributed to Yahoo Sports, Universal Sports, …

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