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Utah Swimming and Diving Season Review

Senior Traycie Swartz was one of four All-Americans for the Utes during the 2013-14 season.

Senior Traycie Swartz was one of four All-Americans for the Utes during the 2013-14 season.

April 23, 2014

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SALT LAKE CITY - The Utah swimming and diving teams ended the 2013-14 season strong, coming away with four All-Americans, 13 NCAA top 50 times and 29 school records.

"This season was an unqualified success for our program," Utah head coach Joe Dykstra said. "Being able to not only turn the page from the previous season's controversy, but to have one of the best seasons in program history is truly remarkable. There are so many highlights to point to such as having both a male and female All-American diver, setting school records in the majority of events, both teams being consistently ranked in the top 25 of the dual meet polls, and both teams finishing in the top 35 at the NCAA Championships. I couldn't be more proud of the coaching staff and student-athletes, and am especially proud of our graduating seniors.

"Looking forward, we are excited to welcome a truly outstanding group of incoming recruits and I already have a list of things we need to improve upon for next season to not only maintain our success from this year, but to push the program to much higher levels both nationally and in the Pac-12."

The Utah men finished the season by taking fifth at the Pac-12 Championships and 35th overall at the NCAA Men's Championships. The Utes started out the season with a huge win over 12th ranked Arizona, 152-148, and would finish the dual meet season with a 5-2 record. The Utes also had a Pac-12 win against Arizona State, as well as victories over UNLV and BYU. One of their two losses came to fourth-ranked USC.

 

 

The Utah women took sixth at the Pac-12 Championships, increasing their point total 411 points from 2013 Pac-12's, and took 29th overall at the NCAA Women's Championships. The Utes finished the dual meet season 8-3 and 3-3 in the Pac-12, which included wins over Oregon State, Arizona State, Washington State, Boise State, UNLV, BYU and Denver. Their only losses this season were against Arizona, USC and UCLA, all of which were ranked in the top 25.

Highlights of the season include Kersten Merry becoming the first female diver in Utah history to earn All-America honors at NCAA's. She finished ninth on platform. Also earning All-America honors was Traycie Swartz in the 100 free (11th), Stina Colleou in the 200 breast (9th) and Josiah Purss on the one-meter (9th). Also competing individually at the NCAA Championships for Utah was Nicole Ligeza, Sami Zuch, Nick Soedel, Bence Kiraly and Kristian Kron.

At the Pac-12 Championships, Soedel (100 free) and Kiraly (1,650 free) won the first ever Pac-12 men's swimming titles in school history. Soedel's season-best time in the 100 free of 41.97 was the fourth-best in the country in the event this season. Kiraly broke a 25-year old school record in the 200 fly during the season.

Others who finished on the podium during the Pac-12 Championships included Colleou, who was second in the 200 breast. It was one of numerous strong performances for her in the event during the year - she was the top collegiate competitor in the event at the US Short Course Nationals, finishing third. Merry (platform) and Purss (1-meter) both finished third at Pac-12's while the 400 free relay team of Soedel, Jonas Holmstrom, Alex Fernandes and Ken Tiltges also took third.

Utah was one of 10 schools to have both a male and female All-American diver during the season.

"This was a watershed season for the Utah diving program, as we really established ourselves as one of the top diving programs in the country," Utah head diving coach Richard Marschner. "Our performances as a team make a very legitimate argument that we are one of the top-10 programs in the country. I couldn't be prouder of Jasmine, Haley, Amanda, Josiah, Jake, Kersten and Caleb for all the hard work they have put in this year and it really paid off for them. This is only the beginning of great things to come for Utah diving and I am already excited about getting started for next year!"

The Utes have signed 19 athletes to letters of intent for 2014-15, giving the Utes 38 total new athletes since Dykstra was named head coach.

School Records

Men 50 free Nick Soedel :19.36 100 free Nick Soedel :41.97 200 free Nick Soedel 1:34.90 500 free Bence Kiraly 4:17.17 1000 free Bence Kiraly 9:04.95 1650 free Bence Kiraly 14.57.59 100 fly Alex Fernandes 47.02 200 fly Bence Kiraly 1:45.73 200 back Kristian Kron 1:42.41 100 breast Ken Tiltges :53.64 200 IM Kristian Kron 1:46.38 400 IM Kristian Kron 3:46.89

400 medley relay Kron, Tiltges 3:11.87 Fernandes, Soedel 200 free relay Soedel, Fernandes 1:18.59 Applin, Tiltges 400 free relay Soedel, Holmstrom 2:53.41 Fernandes, Tiltges 800 free relay Kiraly, Soedel 6:21.15 Holmstrom, Kron

1-Meter (6 Dives) Jacob Crayne 391.90 Platform (6 Dives) Josiah Purss 362.70

Women 50 free Traycie Swartz :22.15 100 free Traycie Swartz :48.04 1000 free Samantha Zuch 9:51.55 1650 free Samantha Zuch 16:19.30 200 back Amanda Barrett 1:57.52 100 breast Nicole Ligeza 1:00.44 200 breast Stina Colleou 2:08.35 400 IM Amanda Barrett 4:18.52

400 medley relay Swartz, Ligeza 3:36.19 Soininen, Gigliotti 800 free relay Swartz, Zuch 7:10.35 Barrett, McArthur

Platform (5 Dives) Kersten Merry 319.30

NCAA Top 50 Times

Men 50 free #22 Nick Soedel 19.36 #50 Ken Tiltges 19.60

100 free #4 Nick Soedel 41.97

200 free #40 Nick Soedel 1:34.90

500 free #32 Bence Kiraly 4:17.71

1650 free #21 Bence Kiraly 14:57.59

200 back #32 Kristian Kron 1:42.41

400 IM #43 Kristian Kron 3:46.89

Women 50 free #19 Traycie Swartz 22.15

100 free #14 Traycie Swartz 48.04

1650 free #41 Sami Zuch 16.19.30

100 breast #33 Nicole Ligeza 1:00.44 #40 Stina Colleou 1:00.71

200 Breast #13 Stina Colleou 2:08.35

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