On Friday, October 25 the University of Notre Dame men’s swimming team, winding up a week of training at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, defeated the United States Air Force Academy 134-128 at the USAFA Natatorium.
The Fighting Irish assured their victory by winning 7 of 12 individual events, and one of the relays. They got things started with a solid 200 medley relay: Bogac Ayhan, Cameron Miller, Frank Dyer, and Zach Stephens combined for a 1:30.88 to 1:32.46 victory over the Falcons’ Angus MacDonald, Michael Barnosky, Ryan Dunne, and George Frank.
Air Force freshman Andrew Faciszewski took the 1000 in 9:49.92. Notre Dame freshman Kevin Bradley, who swam virtually stroke for stroke with Falcon sophomore Kevin Jackson for the last 200, went a 26.0 on the final 50 to garner second place, touching in 9:53.05 to Jackson’s 9:53.62.
In a similar story, The Irish’s Michael Hudspith won the 200 free with a monster last 50. His 1:42.91 took first place, leaving Air Force’s Robby Graves (1:44.05) and Notre Dame’s Colin Babcock (1:44.72) to battle it out for second and third.
In the 100 back Bogac Ayhan of Notre Dame finished first in 51.70; teammate Bertie Nel was second in 52.23 and Falcon Angus MacDonald was third in 52.52.
The Fighting Irish went 1-2 in the 100 breast, as well. Zach Stephens was just ahead of teammate Cameron Miller, 56.02 to 56.32. Air Force’s Michael Barnosky took third with 56.79.
John Williamson of Notre Dame took the 200 fly, well ahead of the rest of the field in 1:51.93. Two Falcons scored next: Sean Ledford (1:56.15) and Paul Leonhardt (1:56.67).
UND record-holder Frank Dyer was first to the wall in the 50 free. His 20.58 relegated Falcons Ryan Dunne (20.70) and George Frank (21.31) to second and third place, respectively.
The Air Force men nearly swept the podium in the 100 free. Falcons Micah Newmann (46.85) and George Frank (47.05) went 1-2; they might have been joined by teammate Jackson Locke if 200 free winner Michael Hudspith of Notre Dame hadn’t put his legs into the final 50 to out-touch Locke 47.30 to 47.41.
Tom Anderson of Notre Dame walked away with the 200 back in 1:53.02. Air Force teammates Kris Tillery and Matthew Walls fought for second. Tillery had the stronger second half, though, and finished a half second ahead, 1:55.19 to 1:55.59.
Air Force went 1-3 in the 200 breast with Michael Barnosky (2:07.34) and Kevin Fanter (2:14.83). Sandwiched between them was second-place finisher Colin Babcock of UND in 2:11.34.
Frank Dyer’s second win came in the 500. Falcon freshman Andrew Faciszewski did his best to keep up with the UND record-holder and, while he finished second (4:42.83 to 4:44.11), he improved his season-best time by four seconds. Air Force’s Alex Strom finished third in 4:48.86.
Ryan Dunne of Air Force won the 100 fly in 49.94, ahead of the Irish’s Zach Stephens (50.83) and fellow Falcon Paul Leonhardt (51.43).
In the final individual event of the contest, the 200 IM, Michael Barnosky of Air Force had put a four-second barrier between himself and the rest of the heat by the end of the breast. The next four all began their freestyle leg at 1:31; another turned at 1:32. After the shakeout of that last 50, two Irish had got their hands on the wall first. Behind Barnosky’s 1:56.78 was Cameron Miller for second in 1:59.08 and Reed Fujan with 1:59.14.
The home team of Falcons Ryan Dunne, Jackson Locke, George Frank, and Micah Newmann took the 400 free relay in 3:03.86; although their teammates Robby Graves, Alex Strom, Paul Leonhardt, and Jordan Dahle finished second, their points weren’t enough to keep the Fighting Irish from claiming victory with a 6-point margin.
The Falcon men are now 6-2; they return to action on November 2, at the University of Wyoming.
Notre Dame’s dual meet record stands at 1-2. The next contest for the Irish comes on November 1 against Purdue at the Boilermaker Aquatic Center in West Lafayette, IN.