The No. 12 USC men’s swimming and diving team, the defending Pac-12 champion and coming off its first sweep of the Bay Area schools in almost two decades, will get in its final tune up before the postseason begins with a regular season-ending dual meet at Utah on Saturday (Feb. 20) at 2 p.m.
This season, the USC men’s team (7-2 overall, 2-2 in the Pac12) opened this season with road wins over UC Santa Barbara and Cal Poly, followed with home victories over Hawaii and Cal State Bakersfield before a road win over Arizona State and a road loss at Arizona. They closed fall action at the Texas Invitational. The Trojans resumed the dual meet season with a January win over Wisconsin before sweeping Cal and Stanford two weeks ago for the first time since 1997.
The Utes are led by senior Bence Kiraly, a strong distance freestyler and butterflyer who has won 14 of his 16 races this season. He was fourth in the 1650y free at the 2015 NCAA Championships.
TOP TIMES – Trojan swimmers and divers with NCAA `B’ cuts
Maclin Davis: 100y fly (47.95).
Cash DeLoache: 200y IM (1:48.77).
Michael Domagala: 200y free (1:37.42), 200y IM (1:47.37), 100y (48.08) and 200y fly (1:45.41).
Dashiell Enos: 1M (326.85), 3M (398.63).
Pawel Furtek: 500y (4:21.05), 1650y free (15:09.79).
Kyle Grissom: 50y free (20.16).
Jonah Hu: 100y (54.47), 200y breast (1:58.45).
Morten Klarskov: 200y IM (1:45.11), 100y (53.44), 200y breast (1:56.28).
Jon Knox: 200y free (1:37.79), 200y back (1:45.56).
Reed Malone: 200y (1:35.58), 500y free (4:19.59).
David Morgan Jr.: 100y breast (54.75).
Patrick Mulcare: 200y free (1:37.97), 200y IM (1:46.78), 100y (47.75), 200y back (1:42.07).
Collin Pollard: 1M (365.18), 3M (390.75), platform (379.70).
Deon Reid: 1M (347.78), 3M (421.35), platform (371.70).
Ted Singley: 500y (4:23.51), 1650y free (15:11.86).
Steven Stumph: 100y (54.69), 200y breast (1:56.70).
Ralf Tribuntsov: 50y (20.17), 100y free (44.17).
Alex Valente: 100y (47.70), 200y fly (1:47.37).
Carsten Vissering: 100y (53.09), 200y breast (1:58.82).
Tim Wynter: 100y back (48.15).
The men’s team (6-2 overall in 2014-15, 4-1 in the Pac-12) is coming of its first conference title since 1979 and its second fourth place finish at the NCAA Championships in the last three years. The women’s team (5-3, 4-3) is coming off an eighth place finish at the NCAA Championships and is one of only four schools to post NCAA top 8 finishes in each of the past six years. It was also third at the Pac-12s. The Trojan men are led by team captains Ted Singley and Morten Klarskov, both seniors, and junior Reed Malone. Malone and Klarskov join junior Michael Domagala and sophomore Ralf Tribuntsov as returning All-Americans. Also back is NCAA individual scorers junior Steven Stumph and senior diver Collin Pollard. Others back with NCAA experience include seniors Ridge Altman, Singley and Maclin Davis, sophomore diver Dashiell Enos and senior diver Deon Reid and sophomore Pawel Furtek.
Among the key freshmen for the USC men are sprinter Kyle Grissom, breaststrokers Billy Monjay and Carsten Vissering, the NAG record holder (15-16) in the 100y and 100m breast, backstroker and IMer Patrick Mulcare, butterflyer Alex Valente, and backstroker Tim Wynter.
* Trojan freshmen have been making a major impact and are dotting the top of USC’s top times list. Patrick Mulcare owns USC’s top times in the 100y and 200y back and the 400y IM while Kyle Grissom tops the 50y free. Alex Valente has USC’s top time in the 100y fly and Carsten Vissering owns Troy’s best effort this year in the 100y breast. Mulcare earned CollegeSwimming.com’s Pac-12 Swimmer of the Week honors after he helped USC sweep Cal and Stanford. He won the 100y and 200y back and the 200y IM against Stanford and was second in each event against Cal. His losses against the Bears came against defending NCAA backstroke champion Ryan Murphy.
* The Trojans were well represented at the 2015 FINA World Championships. Trojans who won medals included junior Reed Malone (silver, 800m free relay), senior Kendyl Stewart (silver, 400m medley relay), junior Chelsea Chenault (gold, 800m free relay) and junior Santo Condorelli (bronze, 400m mixed free relay, Canada). Other current Trojans who competed included junior Michael Domagala (Poland), junior Dylan Carter (Trinidad and Tobago), senior Kasia Wilk (Poland) and sophomore Ralf Tribuntsov (Estonia).
* USC Head Assistant Coach Catherine Vogt was named the 2016 U.S. Olympic Swimming Open Water Head Coach on Sept. 30. She recently coached the U.S. at the 2015 FINA World Championships, where she led the Americans to the Open Water team title. She also was the head coach at the 2013 World Championships, among other international assignments.
* USA Swimming announced its list of the “30 Most Influential People in Swimming over the Past 30 Years” in July of 2015 and USC swimmers and coaches — led by current head coach Dave Salo — accounted for an impressive six members of the elite squad. In addition to Salo on the list are legendary Trojan head coaches Peter Daland and Mark Schubert, former USC All-American and current Cal head women’s coach Teri McKeever, former USC assistant coach, Trojan graduate and all-time swimming great Janet Evans and former volunteer assistant coach Jon Urbanchek.
* Senior Collin Pollard reached the final on platform to cap off the USC men’s and women’s efforts at the 2015 USA Diving Winter Nationals. He finished 12th in the platform final with 992.60 points, 669.80 carried over from the semifinals. FreshmanMadison Witt and senior Sam Adams reached the semifinals on women’s platform, finishing 17th (434.40) and 19th (382.35), respectively.
* Senior Kendyl Stewart competed at the 2015 Duel in the Pool for the U.S., taking fourth in the 100m fly (56.67). Incoming freshman Becca Mann raced twice for the Americans, finishing third in the 800m free (8:12.43) and fifth in the 400m IM (4:31.14). Former Trojan great Katinka Hosszu led Europe’s efforts at the Duel in the Pool with wins in the 200m and 400m IM and the 200m back while fellow Euro teammate and former USC NCAA champ Vladimir Morozov posted top 3 efforts in the 50m and 100m free. Stewart, at the 2015 U.S. Winter Nationals, took third in 58.45.
TROJANS IN THE COMMUNITY
The Trojans’ swimming and diving teams have developed a strong presence in the community, involved in a variety of ways.
* The entire team has adopted the South L.A.-based Bethune Middle School and has worked with its students for the past year to not only overcome fears of water while learning to swim but to develop important life skills as well. The program, kick-started by USC junior and former Trojan swimmer Jamie Christy, includes weekly visits to the school by various USC swimmers. On Nov. 21, in conjunction with the Trojan Swim Club, USC held a fundraising event – the Fall Challenge — for the program. The day before, USC swimmers visited the school for a clinic with students and their parents.
* For the fourth year in a row, USC’s men’s and women’s swimming and diving teams packaged 10,000 meals (on Nov. 10) at Uytengsu Aquatics Center that went directly to the Los Angeles Regional Food Bank. The entire swim and dive team turned out for the event and packaging meals assembly style to give back to the youth of Los Angeles. “As student-athletes, these kids understand the role they have in helping other people less fortunate than they are,” said Head Assistant Coach Catherine Vogt. “We are just happy to be able to be good representatives of the sport and of USC.” The Trojans partnered with Feeding Children Everywhere, a non-profit organization that works to provide meals to hungry children throughout the world. Student-athletes worked together to measure, package and seal the meals for delivery to the food bank.
* Senior Brianna Weinstein was one of two USC representatives at the Pac-12’s SAAC (Student-Athlete Advisory Committee) conference in November to discuss various conference issues. In addition to the meetings, the Pac-12 athletes spent time with Special Olympians, unifying in some competitive bowling and heartfelt camaraderie.
* USC’s swimmers and divers annually participate in and raise money for Troy’s multi-million-dollar benefit, Swim With Mike, that raises money for college scholarships for student-athletes with physical challenges. The annual swim-a-thon was established in 1981 and was originally scheduled to be a one-time event. It was organized by friends and teammates on behalf of Mike Nyeholt, a three-time All-American swimmer who was paralyzed from the chest down following a motorcycle accident suffered in January of 1981. More than $58,000 was raised in the first swim and the total has since swelled to close to $17 million with nearly 200 total scholarships granted to 90 universities, representing 60 sports. While USC’s annual event is set for April 2, fundraisers have sprouted to many schools, including Cal, UConn, Hawaii, Stanford, Arizona and UC Santa Barbara. For more information, go to SwimWithMike.org.
Swimming news courtesy of USC Swimming & Diving.