Amherst Swimming & Diving
1202 Alumni Gym
Amherst College
Amherst, MA 01002

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Jeffs in Third After Day One of NESCAC Championship

Ben McBratney '12 won the 200-yard individual medley with an NCAA "B" time of 1:53.45.

WILLIAMSTOWN, MA – The Amherst College men’s swimming and diving team won two events Friday evening at the Williams College Muir-Samuelson Pool to conclude day one of the 2010 NESCAC Championship in third place. Competition will resume Saturday, with preliminary heats beginning at 10 a.m. and finals taking place in the evening.

Friday’s nine titles were spread out across five schools, with Middlebury College leading the way by winning the 50-yard backstroke, 50-yard freestyle and 400-yard medley relay. Amherst (500 free, 200 IM) and Bowdoin (50 breast, 50 fly) each won two events, with Wesleyan (1-meter) and Williams (200 free relay) each winning one. The host Ephs lead the pack after day one with 740.5 points despite winning only one event, with Tufts (526.5) and Amherst (484) rounding out the top three teams.

Successfully defending his NESCAC title in what proved to be Amherst’s best event of the evening was junior Alex Fraser (Willowbrook, IL), whose 4:29.84 in the 500-yard freestyle marked an NCAA automatic qualifying time. Coming in right behind Fraser was sophomore Ryan Lichtenfels (McLean, VA), who also put in an NCAA “A” performance with a 4:29.94.

Amherst and Williams combined to swim the top eight times in the 500, with junior Ryan Colby (Birdsboro, PA) and first-year Sheng Hu (Lake Bluff, IL) placing fifth (4:37.97, NCAA “B”) and sixth (4:42.17), respectively, for the Lord Jeffs. Fraser and Lichtenfels finished nearly three seconds ahead of the Ephs’ top performer as the only two swimmers to eclipse the NCAA “A” standard.

The Lord Jeffs and Ephs also dominated the 200-yard individual medley by combining for six of the top eight times, with Amherst sophomore Ben McBratney (Evanston, IL) winning the event in 1:53.45 for a “B” cut, only 0.46 seconds ahead of runner-up Paul Dyrkacz ’13 of Williams. Sophomores Bart Federak (Towaco, NJ) and Tim White (Centerport, NY) finished within 0.51 seconds of each other in fourth (1:56.21) and sixth (1:56.72), respectively.

Friday’s finals opened with a third-place finish for Amherst in the 200-yard freestyle relay. Senior co-captain Tad Homchick (Mercer Island, WA) swam the lead leg and was followed by the sophomore corps of White, Lichtenfels and McBratney, who put in an NCAA “B” performance of 1:23.71. Homchick also placed fifth in the 50-yard freestyle (21.10, NCAA “B”), while junior Reid Fitzgerald (New York, NY) landed third in the 50-yard backstroke (24.11) to round out the Lord Jeffs’ top individual performances.

Amherst concluded the first day of competition by placing second in the 400-yard medley relay. Fitzgerald swam the backstroke leg and was followed by Federak, McBratney and Fraser, who swam an NCAA “B” time of 3:24.94.

Saturday will feature the 200- and 1,000-yard freestyles, 100 fly, 100 breast, 100 back, 400 IM, 200 medley relay and 800 free relay. A live webcast and real-time results will be available.

Amherst College Day One Results (Only Listed if Top 8)
* NCAA “A” Time
^ NCAA “B” Time
% Pool Record

200-Yard Freestyle Relay
Tad Homchick, Tim White, Ryan Lichtenfels, Ben McBratney – 3rd (1:23.71) ^

500-Yard Freestyle
Alex Fraser – 1st (4:29.84) *%
Ryan Lichtenfels – 2nd (4:29.94) *
Ryan Colby – 5th (4:37.97) ^
Sheng Hu – 6th (4:42.17)

50-Yard Backstroke
Reid Fitzgerald – 3rd (24.11)

200-Yard Individual Medley
Ben McBratney – 1st (1:53.45) ^
Bart Federak – 4th (1:56.21)
Tim White – 6th (1:56.72)

50-Yard Freestyle
Tad Homchick – 5th (21.10) ^

400-Yard Medley Relay
Reid Fitzgerald, Bart Federak, Ben McBratney, Alex Fraser – 2nd (3:24.94) ^