Men’s swimming and diving celebrates senior day with win over Trojans

Feb. 8, 2023, 2:31 p.m.

Men’s swimming and diving (4-1, 3-1 Pac-12) outraced the visiting USC Trojans (4-3, 1-3 Pac-12) at the Avery Aquatic Center on Saturday, winning 169-108 in the team’s final home meet and penultimate dual meet this season.

As the final meet at Avery of 2022-23, Saturday also marked a celebration of the team’s longest-serving swimmers, seniors Shane Blinkman, Neel Roy, Leon MacAlister, Will Tarvestad and Andrew Matejka.

MacAlister — who said in November that he plans to co-term next year, exercising his fifth season of NCAA eligibility allowed due to COVID-impacted seasons — led the Cardinal out to their first win of the day in the 200-yard medley relay (1:27.62), alongside freshman Zhier Fan and juniors Ethan Hu and Jonny Affeld. Sophomores Aaron Sequeira and Ron Polonsky teamed up with freshmen Hayden Kwan and Andres Dupont as the second-placed unit (1:28.56).

On the individual side, MacAlister logged a characteristic backstroke win, his time of 47.17 comfortably in first place of the 100-yard backstroke, before the senior added a third place finish (44.45) in the 100-yard freestyle behind Dupont and junior Luke Maurer. Fractions of a second behind Maurer at the halfway mark, Dupont charged home to win by the finest of margins, clocking 43.94 to Maurer’s 43.95.

Dupont was again the Cardinal’s highest placed swimmer in the other sprint freestyle event, the freshman swimming 20.36 for second place in the 50-yard freestyle followed by sophomore Avery Voss (20.40) in third. Maurer had earlier emerged victorious from the 200-yard freestyle, stopping the clock at 1:36.66, while Matejka (1:38.54) secured third place.

Fan earned a pair of event wins, taking top spot in both the 100-yard (53.08) and 200-yard (1:56.93) breaststroke. The freshman was joined on the podium each time by junior Ethan Dang, who earned two third-placed finishes. Fan also placed third in the day’s final individual event, the 200-yard individual medley — completing a Stanford podium sweep, behind Affeld (second, 1:48.51) and Polonsky (first, 1:47.59).

After finishing as Stanford’s top performer in the 200-yard butterfly (third, 1:48.05), Kwan led a dominant display by the Cardinal in the 200-yard backstroke — clocking 1:46.31 for first place, and joined in the top three by Polonsky (1:47.84) and Sequeira (1:48.59).

Not for the first time this season, redshirt sophomore and reigning NCAA champion Andrei Minakov (47.02) claimed first in the 100-yard butterfly by over a second, while the 500-yard freestyle saw junior Preston Forst (4:28.77) crowned champion. The day’s distance event, the 1000-yard freestyle, went Matt Fenlon’s way — the sophomore posting a time of 9:19.42 for first place, with freshman Henry Morrissey (9:26.59) touching second.

Across the Avery at the diving pool, sophomore Jack Ryan came out on top in the 1-meter event, and junior Hunter Hollenbeck was the team’s top performer in the 3-meter event, taking third place.

Capping off their final home meet of the season in style, freshman Rafael Gu joined Maurer, Voss and Minakov in the 200-yard freestyle relay — the quartet combining for an event-winning 1:19.73.

Several ‘time trial’ events were also arranged, the full results of which can be found here.

Next up

For their final dual meet of the season before the Pac-12 (Mar. 1-4) and NCAA (Mar. 22-25) Championships, the team is set to travel north to Berkeley (Feb. 18, 12 p.m. PT) to visit fierce conference rivals Cal. That match-up is one in which Dan Schemmel’s squad will hope to replicate their 2021-22 season performance, which saw the Cardinal take a close win over the eventual NCAA champions.

Alex Dakers is a staff writer in the sports section and a first-year masters student studying Journalism. He is from the Cayman Islands (and more recently, an undergrad in the UK). You can catch Alex in the gym, at the pool or trying to find somewhere to watch the Premier League games — if he can wake up early enough to watch them! Contact him at sports 'at'

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