Conference Win Streak Snapped
Feb. 18, 2012
MONTEREY PARK, Calif. (UNLVRebels.com) - The UNLV men's swimming team won three events Saturday night on the final day of action but came up just short in its bid for an eight straight conference championship, as the Rebels finished in second place at the 2012 Mountain Pacific Sports Federation Championships at East Los Angeles Community College.
UNLV held a 33.5 point lead going into the final two events, but was outscored by BYU 63-0 on the platform diving. The Rebels would claim the final event, the 400 free relay, but only outscored the Cougars by eight points. That gave BYU its first MPSF championship with 625 points, while UNLV finished with 603.5 for second. Wyoming was in third with 556, and was followed in fourth by Hawaii (493.5). CSU Bakersfield was fifth (463.5), Air Force sixth (265), Pacific seventh (238), Seattle eighth (227.5) and North Dakota ninth (191).
The night began with the 1650 free, and Matt Roe was UNLV's top finisher, placing third in 15:31.08. Then came the 200 back, where freshman Bart Wanot finished seventh in 1:49.44, and junior Chris Riley was 14th (1:51.14).
Senior Steven Nelms and freshman Coleman Allen finished seventh-eighth in the 100 free, in times of 45.09 and 45.14, respectively. Senior Tyler Bush (10th, 45.30) and Cody Roberts (11th, 45.31) also scored in the event.
The 200 breast saw the first Rebel win of the night. Senior Andrew Morrell won his second race of the championships, touching the wall in a new meet record time of 1:56.63. It was also a NCAA 'B' provisional standard. Brandon Meier placed fifth in the event in 2:01.49.
The next event also went to a Rebel, with freshman Balint Batka out-touching Hawaii's Luca Mazzurana by .22 seconds to win the 200 fly in a meet record and 'B' time of 1:46.47. He was one of four Rebels in the top seven, with freshman Joe Riggert finishing fourth (1:48.98), sophomore Giacomo Gremizzi fifth (1:49.76) and Andrew Mooers seventh (1:50.76).
The final event was the 400 free relay, in which Allen, Roberts, Bush and Nelms teamed up for a winning time of 2:58.19. It was both a new meet record and a 'B' time, and also gave UNLV four of the five relay titles in the meet.
The next action for the Rebels will be at the 2012 NCAA Championships, hosted this year in Seattle, Wash., from March 22-24.