WHITTIER, Calif. — The Cal Lutheran Kingsmen dominated Saturday morning's final conference tri-meet, shutting down the Whittier Poets 207-48 and edging out the Redlands Bulldogs 151-142.
"Both the men and the women had to accomplish things in races in order to win the close meets. The captains made sure we got every point possible. They made sure the kids knew the score and the situation each event all the way to the end," said head coach Barry Schreifels, "The team has evolved into a situation where they swim for each other. They are willing to do any event if it helps CLU win. And the captains have created that team dynamic."
Freshman Miles Gaitan led the charge with three first-place finishes and one second-place finish on the day. He opened with gold in the 200-medley relay (1:39.02), swimming the opening leg for freshman Nathan March, sophomore Andreas Nybo and junior Liam McCallum.
Gaitan went on to also claim first in the 100-back (55.34) and 200-back (2:01.56). Finally, the sophomore took second in the 400-freestyle relay (3:16.44) alongside McCallum, sophomore Nick Kenny and junior Thomas Hamburger.
Also with three first place finishes of his own, Nybo took home the 100-breaststroke (59.31), 100-butterfly (51.98) and 200-individual medley (1:57.01). McCallum added his own top finish in the 200-free (1:46.34) and later went on take third in the 50-free (22.05).
Sharing the podium in the distance races, sophomore Stephen Blaauw took first in the 1650-free (16:34.46) and second in the 500-free (4:46.80), while junior Ben Brewer took first in the 500-free (4:43.49) and second in the 1650-free (15:51.03).
Continuing to rack up the points for the Kingsmen, Kenny placed second in the 50-free (21.95) and third in both the 100-free (48.64) and 200-free (1:49.46).
Rounding out the group, Hamburger finished second in the 200-butterfly (1:58.86), March took second in the 200-breaststroke (2:10.63) followed by freshman Brenden Fuggles in third (2:21.60), Mason Smith took third in the 3-meter dive (108.95), senior Mark Raybukh claimed third in the 200-back (2:08.66) and freshman Vincent Hemingway took third in the 200-individual medley (2:05.91).
The season all comes down to February 21-24 when Cal Lutheran returns to the pool in Commerce, California, for the Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Championships.
Full Results: CLU 207, WC 48; CLU 151, UR 142
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Release by Christy Effendie, Assistant Sports Information Director