SHENANDOAH, Texas -- Two-time defending champion Kenyon remains in the driver’s seat as the Lords look to earn their NCAA record 34th team championship in the past 36 years at the 2015 NCAA Division III Men’s Swimming & Diving Championships being contested at the Conroe ISD. Kenyon, with 348 total team points, holds an 88-point lead against second-place Denison, who has 260 points heading into Saturday’s fourth and final day of competition.
Rounding out the five men’s teams atop the standings, Williams is third with 221 points, Emory is fourth with 187 points and Claremont-Mudd-Scripps Colleges is fifth with 160 points.Two men’s individual DIII swimming records were set on Friday evening, including one performance that was nearly historical.
Emory's Andrew Wilson picked up his second individual national title of the 2015 championships and did it in grand style, touching the wall in the 100 breaststroke in a sizzling 51.72 to destroy the NCAA Division III record he had set during the morning session. His performance Friday night would be the third-fastest posted in Division I this year and is the ninth-fastest swim by an American in short course yards in the history of the event. Wilson won the 200 individual medley title on Wednesday, also in record-breaking time. The national championship is the 18th overall in the history of the Emory men's swimming and diving program, and the 15th in an individual event. After Friday’s performance, Wilson now owns three DIII records (the 100-yard and 200-yard breaststroke and the 200 individual medley). Washington (Mo.)'s Michael Lagieski finished second in a time of 54.11 and Damon Rosenburg of Denison was third in 54.51.
Another record-breaking performance came from senior Alex Anderson of Mary Washington, who defended his 200 butterfly title with a DIII record swim of 1:44.93. It is the fourth individual national title for Anderson (two times in the 400 individual medley and two times in the 200 butterfly) and marks the seventh time a male swimmer has won the event in back-to-back championships. Redlands' Jeff Depew placed second in a time of 1:45.45 and St. Thomas (Minn.)'s Mike Lanz finished third in a time of 1:45.76
In other Friday evening action, Williams' Benjamin Lin, who set the 100 backstroke record Thursday night with his lead-off leg time of 47.03, backed that performance up with an individual victory in the event on Friday evening in a time of 47.77. He finished fourth in the 100 backstroke last year as a freshman. With the victory, Lin becomes the third different male swimmer from Williams to win the event and it is the fifth overall 100 backstroke title for an Eph swimmer. Merchant Marine's Kevin Lindgren placed second with a time of 48.12 and senior Harrison Curley of Kenyon was third in a time of 48.20.
In the final event of the evening, the TCNJ 800 freestyle relay team earned a tightly-contested victory against Kenyon as the Lions’ foursome of Ryan Gajdzisz, Brett Pedersen, Scott Vitabile and Jason Ivins finished in a winning time of 6:33.23. The victory marked the third national relay title for the program as TCNJ won the 200 and 400 freestyle relays a year ago. Kenyon finished just .22 hundredths behind in a time of 6:33.45 while Johns Hopkins placed third in a time of 6:34.90.
Action at the championships resumes on Saturday, with preliminaries at 11 a.m. ET and finals at 7 p.m.