Triple Winners House and Marchand Help ASU Men Top Arizona

by Sarah Berman 8

February 06th, 2022 Big 12, College, News, Previews & Recaps

  • February 5, 2022
  • Hillenbrand Aquatic Center, Tucson, AZ
  • SCY dual meet
  • Meet results
    • Men: Arizona State 195-Arizona 103
    • Women: Arizona 155-Arizona State 139

Arizona State University and University of Arizona squared off in Tucson for their final dual meets of the season. The Sun Devils men’s squad topped the Wildcats on University of Arizona’s senior day. 

The ASU men haven’t lost to Arizona since February 7, 2015, which was before the Sun Devils’ Bob Bowman era. In the Bowman era, the Sun Devils have a 5-0-1 record against their in-state rivals, which used to be the more dominant of the two programs.

The last time the ASU and University of Arizona women faced off in February 2020, the Sun Devils came out on top 181-103. In February 2019, the Wildcats beat the Sun Devils 180.5-119.5. 

On the women’s side, diving proved to be the deciding factor of the Wildcats’ win. Without diving, the meet’s score would have tipped in the Sun Devils’ favor, 139-123 since Arizona collected all 32 diving points. 

Men’s Recap:

#5 Sun Devils Def. Wildcats

House was the winner of a 1-2-3 finish for the Sun Devils in the 200 freestyle (1:32.18). He was followed by teammates Patrick Sammon (1:35.12), and Julian Hill (1:35.58). House led another ASU sweep in the 100 free (42.96), followed by Carter Swift (43.29), Sammon (43.65), and Jack Dolan (43.84). In House’s final event of the day, the 200 IM, he won the race two-seconds ahead of teammate David Schlicht (1:45.52). Wildcat swimmer Ognjen Maric touched 3rd at 1:47.66 seconds. 

House’s return is a huge boost to the ASU roster. For the 2020-2021 season, ASU redshirted its entire roster. House also took a redshirt season in 2019-2020 to prepare for the Olympic Trials, which were ultimately postponed. 2019-2020 would have been his junior season with ASU. This year, he’s listed as a redshirt senior on the Sun Devils’ roster. House was an NCAA scorer in the 200 freestyle during his freshman and sophomore campaigns. As a rookie, he was 14th (1:33.47), and tied for 10th (1:32.29) as a sophomore. At the GAC Invitational in November 2021, House blasted a new best time in the 200 freestyle (1:31.73) which is the fastest time in the NCAA so far this season. 

Leon Marchand is having an excellent rookie campaign as a Sun Devil. The French swimmer has made a nearly seamless transition to yards swimming and will be a huge force for ASU during championship season. He has the NCAA leading 400 IM time (3:35.62) from the GAC Invitational in November 2021, which is almost two-seconds ahead of Texas’ Carson Foster (3:37.35). 

Against the University of Arizona, Marchand won the 200 fly (1:42.26), 200 back (1:43.31), and 200 breast (1:54.47) triple. This is the 5th consecutive dual meet where Marchand has picked up multiple wins. 

The 200 fly, 200 back, and 200 breast all occur on day 4 of the NCAA Championships. It’s likely that Marchand opts to swim the 200 fly, where he is a title contender. In the 200 fly, Marchand touched first (1:42.26), which was just ahead of the Wildcats’ Brooks Fail (1:42.85), and teammate Alexander Colson (1:42.98). Marchand’s season’s best 1:40.86 seconds from the GAC Invitational currently ranks 4th in the NCAA. Colson has a season’s best of 1:41.38 seconds from the GAC Invitational, which ranks him 6th in the NCAA. Fail was just off his season’s best time (1:42.30) from the Minnesota Invite in December 2021. He currently sits 15th in the NCAA this season. 

  • Arizona’s Fail won the 1,000 freestyle (8:51.73), which was a massive season’s best for him. His old season’s best was 9:01.77 from the Minnesota Invite. The 1,000 is not contested at the Pac-12 or NCAA Championships, but this is a good sign for Fail’s mile. He also touched first in the 500 freestyle (4:16.71), four-seconds ahead of 2nd place finisher Liam Bresette (4:21.06). Fail ranks 2nd in the NCAA in the 500 with his 4:10.32 seconds from the Minnesota Invite.
  • ASU claimed 1st-4th place in the 50 freestyle: Swift (19.77), Cody Bybee (19.80), Ethan Luc (19.82), Evan Carlson (20.07). The Sun Devil’s 200 freestyle relay from the GAC Invitational (1:16.60) currently sits 3rd in the NCAA, just behind Texas (1:15.49) and Cal (1:16.46).

Women’s Recap

Wildcats Def. #16 Sun Devils

Arizona’s Aria Bernal led the Wildcats in both backstroke events, touching at 52.26 seconds in the 100, two-seconds ahead of teammate Chloe Clark. Bernal’s personal best (51.59) came from the Minnesota Invitational en-route to leading off the Wildcats’ 400 medley relay. Individually in the 100 backstroke at that same meet, she posted a 51.83, which ranks 9th in the NCAA this season. Bernal placed 6th (52.63) in the 100 backstroke at the 2021 Pac-12 Championships. At the Pac-12 Championships in 2020, she placed 3rd (52.00). 

In the 200 backstroke, Bernal won in 1:56.55 seconds, which led to a 1-2-3-4 sweep for the Wildcats in this event. Felicity Passon was 2nd (1:58.40), followed by Erin Lang (1:59.29), and Axana Merckx (1:59.73). At the Minnesota Invitational, Bernal posted a new best time of 1:54.52 seconds, which is almost 3-seconds faster than what she went at the 2021 Pac-12 Championships (1:57.27).

Emma Nordin of ASU was another double-winner, taking the top spot in the 1,000 freestyle and 500 freestyle. In the 1,000, Nordin touched at 9:53.22, which was 23-seconds ahead of 2nd place finisher Stella Copeland of Arizona (10:16.53). Nordin is currently ranked 1st in the NCAA in the 1,650 with a time of 15:47.15, which is from the GAC Invitational. She leads the NCAA by almost five-seconds ahead of Kensey McMahon of Alabama (15:52.05). 

The 500 freestyle was a Sun Devil showdown between Nordin and teammate Erica Laning. Laning came from behind to challenge Nordin, but it was Nordin who touched 1st (4:47.42) just ahead of Laning (4:47.80). The duo finished almost two-seconds ahead of Arizona’s Tia Lindsey (4:49.72). Nordin currently ranks 2nd in the NCAA with her time from the GAC Invitational (4:34.87), which is just behind Lia Thomas (4:34.06) of the University of Pennsylvania. Nordin’s lifetime best is 4:33.74 seconds from the 2020 Pac-12 Championships. 

Delaney Schnell of Arizona swept both the 1-meter and platform events. Heading into the championship season, Schnell is expected to pick up major diving points for the Wildcats as she is the defending Pac-12 champion on the 1-meter and platform boards. At the 2021 NCAA Championships, she placed 2nd in the platform and 4th in the 1-meter diving events. 

ASU is rebuilding its diving program. In September 2021, the school announced that long-time volunteer assistant coach Marc Briggs was promoted to lead the Sun Devils diving program. In May 2020, rumors swirled that ASU was discontinuing its diving program after former coach Marc Bradshaw left the program in April 2020, and all Sun Devil divers entered the transfer portal. ASU denied these claims. ASU did not have any returning divers as none from the 2019-2020 season returned, and the Sun Devils did not have any incoming freshman divers. Briggs is now rebuilding the ASU diving program from scratch.

  • In the 100 butterfly, Arizona’s Julia Heimstead won in a season’s best time of 52.42, bettering her 52.69 from the Minnesota Invitational. At last year’s Pac-12 Championships as a freshman, Heimstead finished 7th in the 200 butterfly (1:59.73). In prelims, she posted a lifetime best 1:58.93 seconds. This season, she’s already dropped a massive lifetime best 1:55.64 seconds in the event, which sits 23rd in the NCAA. Against ASU, she placed 2nd in the event behind Lindsay Looney of ASU (1:55.50). Looney posted a 1:54.17 at ASU’s Intersquad meet last month, which sits 11th in the NCAA this season. She placed 4th in the 200 butterfly (1:55.49) at the 2020 Pac-12 Championships. 
  • The 400 freestyle relay was a tight battle between the Sun Devils and Wildcats’ A-relays. The Wildcats narrowly edged the Sun Devils, 3:17.42 to 3:17.89, respectively. The Wildcats’ lineup featured Heimstead (49.52), Passon (49.41), Alyssa Schwengel (49.52), and Lexi Duchsherer (48.97). At the Minnesota Invite, the Wildcats posted a 3:16.65, which currently sits 22nd in the NCAA rankings. Passon had a near-identical split in Minnesota (49.38). The Sun Devils went with Erin Milligan (49.61), Natalia Fryckowska (50.43), Looney (48.52), and Laning (49.33). 

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meow meow
6 months ago

Job saving wins baby!

mds
6 months ago

And add in a 1d:33.2 200 free three weeks ago.

Swimfan25
6 months ago

A little disappointed in the commentary on the diving which was why ASU lost and but for the diving they would have won. Really? The U of AZ girls deserved that win. It is a swimming AND diving competition. If ASU wants to win these duals they can improve their diving. Give the Wildcat women some credit for beating ASU as a team.

Admin
Reply to  Swimfan25
6 months ago

We get this response a lot when it comes to diving. People get really angry when you write “the diving gap was the difference of the meet,” but nobody cares when we write that “butterfly dominance was the difference in the meet,” or “Susie Swimmer was the difference in the meet.”

Perhaps it’s not us who doesn’t consider divers to be part of the team…

Last edited 6 months ago by Braden Keith
Swimfan25
Reply to  Braden Keith
6 months ago

I don’t disagree that different aspects of the meet can make a difference in the end result. Just never seen a reporter go so far as calculate the score with the different results. It just came across very ASU biased reporting.

The bottom line is U of Az won the meet. Enough said.

Admin
Reply to  Swimfan25
6 months ago

It seems like your primary interest is a rose-colored view of the Arizona Wildcats. Which is great – you’re welcome to that interest. Arizona puts out a press release after every meet, and that might better scratch the itch you’re looking for.

Most of our audience doesn’t have a vested interest in either team, and so are interested in things like this – what we call “context” in our business. They don’t just want to read a one-line report that “Arizona won,” and if they did, they’d just look at results. They want to know why and how Arizona won. As you put it – they want to know which different aspects of a meet made a difference in the… Read more »

Werner Swimzog
6 months ago

MP has one of the most famous swimmers ever endorse it, but hardly (no?) others. Anyone know if they have any significant endorsements. Strikes me as either a good business move because maybe they dont need one, or a bad business because they wont/cant sign any one.

MarkB
6 months ago

400 IM dual meet schedule – 200 Fly, 200 Back, 200 Breast. Now please go win them all. Thank you.