The TCU Horned Frogs dealt in-state rivals SMU a season-opening loss Wednesday night, winning 11 of 16 events. The two Texas teams met on neutral ground, in Mansfield, smack-dab in the middle between each school’s home city.
The Horned Frogs were led by double wins from distance man Thor Stenfjord and backstroker Cooper Robinson. Both are seniors.
Stenfjord was a key contributor in an early run where TCU took three events straight to build a team lead. After the Frogs won the 200 medley relay, Stenfjord went 9:37.34 to lead a 1-2-3 finish in the 1000 free. He would come back to win the 500 free in 4:35.70.
Robinson won twice in the second half of the meet. His first victory didn’t come until the 10th event, the 200 back, where he went 1:47.18 to blow away the field. Robinson returned to win the final individual event, the 200 IM, in 1:52.58.
Second in that 200 IM was SMU’s Matthew Ackman, who was one of the top threats for the Mustangs. The freshman won the 200 breast earlier in the meet, going 2:04.10.
Mustang junior Samuel Straughan won twice in the pool. He pulled a 100 back/100 fly combo, taking each in thrilling fashion. In the backstroke, he barely outlasted TCU’s Robinson 49.73 to 49.83. The 100 fly was a little more spread out, with Straughan going 49.54 to beat Adam Szilagyi‘s 50.45.
Szilagyi got his own win earlier on, taking the 200 free in 1:42.51 for TCU.
The other double winner was SMU’s Devin Burnett, who took home wins on both diving boards. Burnett scored 362.78 on 1-meter and 365.85 on 3-meter for the Mustangs.
Two Horned Frogs tied for the 100 free crown. Junior Corey Nix and senior Josh Mangus each went 46.13 to just beat out SMU’s Zerga Cerkovnik by .04. Other TCU winners included Ford Story in the 100 breast (56.01), Carlos Hunnicutt in the 200 fly (1:51.47) and Garrett Hills in the 50 free (21.09).
Both of the relays went to TCU, capping off a 173.5-126.5 win to move the Horned Frogs to 3-0 on the season. SMU’s men had not competed prior to this dual, and fall to 0-1.