The final day of the 2014 Mid-American Conference Championship in Buffalo, NY ended with Missouri State University taking home the MAC crown in dominating fashion. The Bears held a commanding lead over the field for most of the weekend and earned their first MAC championship title since joining the conference in the 09-10 season.
Day Three Summary:
The first event of the evening saw Buffalo’s Dan O’Connor win the MAC title in the 1650 free with a time of 15:04.66. Sophomore Miguel Davila of Missouri State would follow in second at 15:07.93 and his teammate Cal Schuermann took third in 15:21.97. Another MSU swimmer, Jared Roberts, took fourth in 15:28.41. Those four swimmers all managed to earn NCAA “B” cuts.
MSU junior Paul Le earned the Bear’s first title of the day, winning the 200 back in 1:42.75. Le was 1:41.95 earlier in the day, setting a new Alumni Arena Natatorium pool record in the process. Le’s teammate Yuri Garanito took the runner-up position at 1:44.86 and Easter Michigan freshman Cole Bateman rounded out third in 1:45.40. All three men achieved NCAA “B” standards with their swims.
MSU sophomore Uvis Kalnins and Buffalo senior Mike Dugan had a shootout in the 100 free, with Kalnins edging Dugan with a time of 43.67. Dugan was just behind in 43.67 to take second place. EMU junior Brian Moore took third in a time of 44.20 and Joe Baumgartner of Miami-Ohio took fourth in 44.24. The aforementioned men all dipped under the NCAA “B” standard.
The 200 breaststroke saw EMU junior Mike Fisher successfully defend his conference title and set a new MAC meet record time of 1:56.82 in the process. MSU sophomore Issac Springer snagged a runner-up position with a time of 1:58.22. Scott Huang out of Buffalo finished third in 1:58.92. Only three swimmers in the A-final failed to achieve “B” standards.
Eastern Michigan’s Krzyszt Gilski took home the conference crown in the 200 fly and repeated as MAC champion, speeding to a time of 1:46.01. That mark lowered the pool record he set in prelims earlier today. Matthew Wilson of MSU snagged himself a runner-up position, finishing in 1:47.79. Till Pallman of SIU rounded out third at 1:48.12.
The final event of the meet saw a showdown between Missouri State and Eastern Michigan in the 400 free relay. The MSU quartet of Paul Le (44.64), Vitalli Baryshok (44.40), Caleb Schuermann (44.72) and Uvis Kalnins (43.21) would ultimately come out on top with a new pool record time of 2:56.97. Their mark was just off the MAC record of 2:56.31 set by Buffalo in 2012. The Eastern Michigan squad put down a time of 2:57.54 and Miami finished third in 2:58.82.
1. Missouri State: 833
2. Eastern Michigan: 682
3. Buffalo: 657
4. Miami-Ohio: 527
5. Southern Illinois: 383
6. Ball State: 160
7. Evansville: 153