March 29, 2014
AUSTIN, Texas (UNLVRebels.com) -
Needing to score points on Saturday to have a chance at a top-20 finish, UNLV did exactly that in the final event with an 11th place relay performance, and the Rebels would finish in 19th place as the 2014 NCAA Men's Swimming Championships concluded after three days at the Lee & Joe Jamail Texas Swimming Center on the University of Texas campus. The Rebels finished the meet with 50 points, seven off the school record 57 scored by the 2010-11 squad, which also placed 19th at the national championships. The 2010-11 squad and this year's team are the only two to post top-20 finishes in program history.
The Rebels entered the championships ranked 15th in the 400 free relay, and lived up to that seed in the morning preliminaries with a time of 2:53.07. That would qualify them for the night consolations. Starting in lane #1, the Rebels were a surprise outside lane leader for the majority of the consolation heat before fading out near the end. The end result was still an impressive move up to 11th place thanks to a 2:52.36, a new UNLV and WAC record mark. That move up four spots, and the additional eight points to go with it, was the difference in the Rebels finishing 19th, ahead of 20th place Virginia Tech (46).
Making up the relay squad, the fourth of the meet from UNLV to score points and the third to earn Relay Honorable Mention All-American honors, was sophomore Tom Paco-Pedroni, sophomore Samuel Lameynardie, sophomore Dillon Virva and senior Giacomo Gremizzi.
California stormed past Texas on the final day to win the team title with 468.5 points, while the host Longhorns placed second with 417.5 points, and Florida was third with 387. UNLV was the only school from a non-power conference in the top 27 of the team standings.
Paco-Pedroni nearly scored points in a second event for UNLV on the final day, after finishing as the first alternate in the 100 free in the morning prelims. His time of 42.58, which was 17th overall and just .05 seconds away from a spot in the night consolations, set a new UNLV standard and broke a 17-year old WAC record, that had been held by Lars Frolander of SMU.
2014 NCAA Men's Swimming & Diving Championships
Lee & Joe Jamail Texas Swimming Center
Saturday, March 29
Third Day Results
19. UNLV - 50 points
Honorable Mention All-American status
400 Free Relay - Tom Paco-Pedroni, Samuel Lameynardie, Dillon Virva, Giacomo Gremizzi - 11th (2:52.36)
Other UNLV swims
100 Free - Tom Paco-Pedroni - 17th (42.58)
UNLV and WAC record swims
400 Free Relay - 2:52.36 (Tom Paco-Pedroni, Samuel Lameynardie, Dillon Virva, Giacomo Gremizzi)
100 Free - 42.58 (Tom Paco-Pedroni)