Cordes dominates at NCAAs
The season concluded for the Arizona men’s swimming and diving teams on Saturday as they earned a seventh-place finish at the NCAA Championships.
Held in Austin, Texas, the meet was the setting for three individual championships.
Junior breaststroker Kevin Cordes dominated both the 100-yard and 200y breaststroke events, for which he broke the American records.
“It never gets old,” Cordes said in a press release. “I definitely wanted to defend my titles and improve upon my times and, fortunately, I was able to do that.”
Junior Kevin Cordes won the national championship in the 100y and 200y breaststroke in record-breaking fashion.
Cordes’ time of 50.04 in the 100y breaststroke broke his own American, U.S. Open, NCAA and school records, and secured his third straight national championship in the event.
Perhaps even more impressive was the fashion in which Cordes sailed to victory in the 200y breaststroke, beating his nearest opponent by more than three seconds. His time of 1:48.66 now stands as the American, U.S. Open, NCAA and school record in the event. In recognition of his commanding performances, Cordes was named NCAA Swimmer of the Meet.
Junior Brad Tandy also collected an NCAA title as he sprinted to victory in the 50y freestyle. His time of 18.95 tied Kristian Gkolomeev of Alabama, marking the third tie in the 50y freestyle in meet history.
On the diving side, sophomore Rafael Quintero earned a second-place finish in the platform event with 452.40 points. Quintero also got sixth place in the 1-meter competition on Friday.
In butterfly events, senior Giles Smith earned a fourth-place finish in the 100y butterfly with a time of 45.43, while sophomore Michael Meyer took sixth in the 200y butterfly with a time of 1:43.05.
The team of Tandy, Smith, Jeff Amlee and Mitchell Friedemann swam to a fourth-place finish in the 200y freestyle relay after clocking in at 1:16.67.
Notable performances in “B” finals include sophomore Andrew Porter’s win in the 100y butterfly with a time of 45.50, and senior Matt Barber’s second place finish in the 500y butterfly with a time of 4:15.08.
The Wildcats finished seventh overall in the team standings with 198.5 points. UC Berkeley won the national title, finishing just ahead of Texas and Florida.
After a season marred by the resignation of former head coach Eric Hansen for undisclosed reasons, Cordes said he’s pleased to end the year on a good note.
“It’s really satisfying to end the season out like this,” Cordes said. “We had a little rough patch and some bad breaks, but I finished it off strong. I couldn’t be happier.”
—Follow Mark Armao @MarkArmao