Men's Swim & Dive Reaches Podium Three Times
Colonials grab two golds and a bronze on Thursday
GENEVA, Ohio - The George Washington men's swimming and diving team took three trips to the podium on Thursday on day two of the 2017 Atlantic 10 Championships at the SPIRE Institute.
Freshman Moritz Fath took gold in the 500-yard freestyle and the Colonials won the 200 free relay while setting three new program records. Sophomore Jake Ortiz reached the podium with a third-place finish on the 1-meter boards in a stellar day for the Buff and Blue.
"I'm really, really happy for our men's side today," said head coach James Winchester. "I know coming off the disqualification last night, it took us a little time to get going this morning, but I thought they really got some momentum tonight. Time and time again we kept swimming faster and higher than we were seeded from this morning."
The Colonials sit in third place after two days of competition with 177 points. Massachusetts (204) leads the eight-team field, followed by La Salle (199). George Mason (157.5), St. Bonaventure (152), Fordham (146.5), Saint Louis (144) and Davidson (80) trail GW.
Fath began his day with a record-breaking performance in the 500 free preliminaries, snapping Glendon Flint's GW record from 1996 with his time of 4:27.23 to earn a spot in the championship final. Fath went on to win the event, besting his own record in 4:25.01 to earn gold.
In the 200 free relay, the team of juniors Gustav Hokfelt and Adam Drury, senior Andrea Bolognesi and sophomore Alexander Auster touched the wall in 1:20.19 to grab gold and set a new GW record. Hokfelt's opening-leg time of 20.32 also set a new program record in the 50 free.
"To end with Jake getting on the podium in the 1-meter and Gustav setting the school record in the front end of a school-record and conference winning relay was a great way to finish it," said Winchester.
Ortiz tallied a stellar day on the boards, taking third with a score of 281.15 for another GW podium appearance.
"Jake had a very solid meet today," said head diving coach Anthony Crowder. "He was consistent throughout and hit big when he needed to. He had great support from the entire team and will look to share more victories as the week continues."
Two Colonials competed in the championship final of the 50 free; Auster took fifth in 20.59 and Hokfelt followed in sixth in 20.62. Drury placed second in the consolation final, good for 10th overall, in a personal-best 20.82.
Freshmen Max Forstenhaeusler and Emils Pone reached the consolation finals of the 200 IM. Forstenhaeusler won the heat to take ninth overall in a personal-best time of 1:49.57, while Pone took fifth, good for 13th overall, in 1:50.97.
"It's been a total team effort," said Winchester. "We have two more big days ahead of us and it's going to take a total team effort to see what we can do."
The Buff and Blue return to action on Friday with preliminaries beginning at 10 a.m. and finals at 6:30 p.m.
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