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Only a few days after receiving a verbal commitment from the 2022 World Juniors girls’ 10K champion Bettina Fabian, the North Carolina State University swimming and diving program has picked up the boys’ champion, Dávid Betlehem, who announced his intention to join the Wolfpack next fall on social media, writing:
“I am beyond thrilled and honored to announce my commitment to continue my academic and athletic studies at North Carolina State University. A huge thanks to my family, coaches, Friends and teammates for the endless support. Couldn’t be more excited to be a part of such an amazing family! GOPACK!!🐺❤️”
Betlehem hails from Bagod, Hungary. He trains with Balaton ÚK Veszprém and represents Hungary on the international stage. Betlehem competed at the 2022 FINA World Junior Open Water Swimming Championships in September, where he won the boys’ 10K race by four minutes, 32.5 seconds, in a dominant 1:53:10.30. He and Fabian teamed up to win more gold for Hungary in the mixed 4×1500 relay, beating Germany by 1:33 minutes and Italy by 2:07 minutes.
In 2021, he represented Hungary at both the European Championships in Budapest and the European Junior Championships in Rome. At the latter meet, he won the silver medal in the 1500 free, clocking a PB of 15:02.28. That was 15.9 seconds faster than he had swum two months earlier in Budapest, where he finished 12th in prelims.
Best LCM times (converted):
- 1500 free – 15:02.28 (14:44.58)
- 800 free – 8:00.57 (8:58.45)
- 400 free – 3:52.46 (4:20.45)
- 200 free – 1:51.65 (1:37.70)
- 200 back – 2:03.77 (1:49.34)
- 200 fly – 2:02.14 (1:47.51)
- 400 IM – 4:33.86 (4:00.95)
Betlehem will suit up with #9 Hudson Williams, #13 Chase Mueller, Jerry Fox, Mitchell Ledford, Will Heck, Henry Lee, J.R. Taylor, Ksawery Masiuk, Sam Flack, and Wells Walker in the NC State class of 2027. He is arguably the best distance freestyler in the class, as his converted time would have won the mile at the combined Winter Juniors meets by 5 seconds. Moreover, a 14:44 would have scored in 12th place at 2022 NCAA Division I Championships, where Will Gallant and Ross Dant went 2-3 with 14:31s. James Plage was 17th with 14:54. Betlehem will overlap with Gallant and Plage, both juniors this year. Dant is a senior and could be eligible for a fifth year.
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