The SMU men’s swimming and diving team hosts Texas A&M in its last dual meet of the season Friday at 6:30 p.m. CT at the Mansfield ISD Natatorium. The Mustangs are 3-0 in dual action this season with wins over Connecticut, TCU and Incarnate Word, while the Aggies are 3-1 in dual events. Live results can be found at SMUMustangs.com or on the Meet Mobile App by searching “SMU Men vs Texas A&M”.
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LAST TIME OUT
The Mustangs improved to 3-0 in dual action this season with a 177-114 victory over Incarnate Word on Jan. 11. Junior Jonathan Gomez led the way for the Mustangs as he posted wins in three events, coming away with victories in the 1,000 free, 200 fly and 200 IM.
Simon Golczyk led a trio of Mustangs including Ziga Cerkovnik (2nd) and Garrett Carson (3rd) on the podium in the 100 fly, and Bartosz Krzyzaniak doubled for the Ponies, sweeping backstroke events. In the 100 breast Ziga Cerkovnik paced the field, which included Mustangs in the top four positions.
Sprint freestyle events went to Ralph Koo (50) and Nick Badsky (100), and in relay action, SMU won the 200 medley relay to open swimming events, and closed the afternoon with a win in the 400 free relay.
For the third time this season, Bryce Klein swept diving events in a dual meet with wins on 1 and 3 meter.
The men’s swimming and diving program has earned the first of two possible College Swimming Coaches Association of America (CSCAA) team awards this season. To be selected as a CSCAA Scholar All-America Team, programs must have achieved a grade point average of 3.00 or higher over the fall semester. The Mustangs registered a 3.29 GPA placing them in the 18th spot of 86 teams listed, and positioning them above the national average of 3.22. Mustang seniors have been honored each semester on the Hilltop thus far.
AMERICAN TOP TIMES
Junior Jonathan Gomez leads the American Athletic Conference in both the 200-yard butterfly (1:43.36 (c)) and 400-yard individual medley (3:50.84 (c)), while Ralph Koo (50 free, 20.50) Bartosz Krzyzaniak (100 back, 49.49) and Gomez (1650 free, 15:39.90) all have times in the top three of their respective events. The Mustangs also hold 18 times within the top 8 of events, which would place them in the Championship Final at Conference.
Junior Bryce Klein has won the American Athletic Conference Diver of the Week honor a league-leading four times this season (Jan. 17, Nov. 22, Nov. 8, Oct. 25). His most recent award came on the heels of the Mustangs’ dual meet win over Incarnate Word where Klein won both the 1- and 3-meter events. Classmate Jonathan Gomez has the lone nod for the swimmers this season, winning the award on Oct. 25.
2017 AMERICAN CHAMPIONSHIPS
The 2017 American Athletic Conference Swimming and Diving Championships will be held Feb. 15-18 at the CRWC Natatorium on the campus of Houston. Tickets can be purchased on the American’s Championship Central page. This will be the second straight year Houston has hosted the Championships, and the event is slated to come to SMU in 2018.
Junior Bryce Klein will make his third appearance at NCAA ZonesMarch 6-8, after posting qualifying scores on both the 1- and 3-meter springboards at the Mustangs’ first event this season. Klein advanced beyond Zones to the NCAA Championships a season ago, finishing 17th on 3 meter. Junior Jonathan Gomez has also posted provisional standards in the 200-yard butterfly (1:43.36 (c)) and 400-yard individual medley (3:50.84 (c)) and looks to improve on those times for the NCAA Division I Swimming and Diving Championships held March 22-25.
WINTER DIVING ACTION
Bryce Klein earned a silver medal on synchronized 3 meter at USA Diving Winter National Championships. The junior also advanced to the semifinal on 3 meter, placing 10th. At the Tennessee Diving Invite, Klein was second on 1 meter, his only event of the competition.
SMU broke ground on the Robson Lindley Aquatics Center and Barr-McMillion Natatorium in February. The 42,000-square-foot center will be home to SMU’s internationally recognized men’s and women’s swimming and diving teams. Located at 5550 SMU Blvd. on the University’s growing east campus, the center will provide facilities for practice, competition and community use. The Aquatics Center will feature an Olympic-sized, eight-lane indoor pool with a platform diving area, including four springboards and a 10-meter tower for training and competition. Coaches’ offices, men’s, women’s and visitor locker rooms and a classroom and meeting area will be located adjacent to the pool. Spectator seating for 800 will be on the mezzanine level.
GOMEZ GOES TO RIO
Incoming junior Jonathan Gomez represented Colombia at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games. The first-time Olympian made an appearance in the semifinals of the 200-meter butterfly finishing 15th overall. Following a fifth place qualifying performance in preliminary heats, Gomez touched in 1:57.47 in semifinals.
Mustang alum Julian Fletcher also made his Olympic debut for Bermuda participating in the 100-meter breaststroke as one of two swimmers representing the country in Rio. Fletcher placed third in his heat, ranking him 40th overall, with a time of 1:02.73.
AAC Men’s Diver of the Year Bryce Klein was honored with the 2015-16 AAC Scholar-Athlete Excellence Award for men’s swimming and diving. Nominees for the award are chosen based on athletic performance (40 percent), academic performance (40 percent) and community service (20 percent), and must have achieved at least junior standing.
Klein is the school record holder on both 1- and 3-meter, and also swept those events at the AAC Championship. The five-time all-conference selection earned The American’s Diver of the Week honor a league-leading five times during the 2015-16 season and also holds the AAC meet record on the 1 meter. Klein finished 17th at the NCAA Championship on 3 meter, and went on to compete at the U.S. Olympic Trials in 3 meter and 3-meter synchro events, reaching the finals in the synchro event. Most recently, Klein earned bronze on 3 meter at USA Nationals. Klein was also named First-Team Scholar All-America by the CSCAA.
The Mustangs also placed 27 student-athletes on The American’s All-Academic Team (3.0 GPA). As a team, the Ponies picked up team honors from the conference as the men’s swimming and diving program with the highest GPA.
2016 NCAA CHAMPIONSHIP
Bryce Klein competed on 3 meter at the 2016 Championships, finishing 17th overall after competing in the Consolation Final. Klein posted a 367.60 in preliminary action to place him in a two-way tie for 16th with Mark Anderson of Texas. With the qualification rule, divers who place ninth through 16th advance to the Consolation Final. However, the two would compete in a “dive off” scenario against one another to vie for the higher place in the Final. Anderson went on to post a 448.45 for second place, causing Klein, who posted the sixth highest total (368.95), to drop to 17th overall despite his placement.
2016 AAC CHAMPIONSHIP
SMU finished 2nd at the 2016 American Athletic Conference Championship winning 13 of 21 events at the event in Houston. The Mustangs won 4 of 5 relays at the event and swept individual honors as Sam Straughan was named the Most Outstanding Swimmer of the Meet and Bryce Klein took home Most Outstanding Diver accolades.
200 free relay*: Krzyzaniak, Straughan, Cerkovnik, Scherubl
400 free relay*: Cerkovnik, Straughan, Schenke, Scherubl
800 free relay: Krzyzaniak, Schenke, M. Colket, Scherubl
200 medley relay*: Krzyzaniak, Cerkovnik, Straughan, Scherubl
400 medley relay*: Krzyzaniak, Cerkovnik, Straughan, Schenke
Ziga Cerkovnik: 50 free*, 100 free*
Bartosz Krzyzaniak: 100 back, 200 back
Stefan Popov: 200 breast
Christian Scherubl: 100 free, 200 free*, 500 free*
Sam Straughan: 100 fly*, 200 fly*, 200 back*
Bryce Klein: 1-meter*, 3-meter*, platform
Daniel Pitts: platform
*Denotes Conference Champion
Nine Mustangs posted NCAA provisional standards a season ago, with Ziga Cerkovnik (50 free, 100 free, 100 breast), Bartosz Krzyzaniak (200 free, 100 back 200 back), Christian Scherubl (100 free, 200 free, 500 free) and Sam Straughan (100 back, 100 fly, 200 fly) posting three each. Stefan Popov earned B standards in the 100 and 200 breast, while Lucas Schenke achieved the status in the 500 free during his first season. Bryce Klein, Parker Meinecke and Daniel Pitts all registered qualifying scores for the Zone D Diving Championships with Klein advancing to compete at the NCAA Championship on 3 meter.
Christian Scherubl and Bryce Klein have each set a pair of SMU standards in two years of competition on the Hilltop. Scherubl holds the program’s fastest times in the 200- and 500-yard freestyles, posting both times as a freshman. The Austria native clocked a 1:34.56 in the 200, and 4:18.23 in the 500. Klein most recently registered a 407.25 to break the 1-meter record, and posted a 424.60 in 3-meter.
The Ponies garnered 13 of the 22 conference weekly awards during the 2015-16 season, the most of any of the league’s teams. The Mustangs also had six award sweeps, more than any of their opponents. Bryce Klein was named the American Athletic Conference Diver of the Week a conference-leading six times (Feb. 9, Feb. 2, Jan. 12, Nov. 24, Nov. 10, Nov. 3). Fellow diver Daniel Pitts joins him with a pair of nods on Feb. 9 and Oct. 6. On the swimming side, four Mustangs earned the honor, including Bartosz Krzyzaniak (Feb. 9, Nov. 24), Lucas Schenke(Feb. 2, Nov. 10), Christian Scherubl (Nov. 3) and Sam Straughan (Oct. 6).
SMU has won 41 conference championships since the 1946-47 season, with 16 coming under current head coach Eddie Sinnott. In all, the program has produced 633 individual champions at the conference level, and 30 at the NCAA level. The Mustangs have earned runner-up honors at each of the three American Athletic Conference Championships.
News courtesy of SMU Athletics.