By Quinn Horner
The Air Force men’s swimming and diving team placed fourth after the final day of competition at the Art Adamson Invitational in College Station, Texas on Nov. 18.
Texas A&M, the host school, won the tournament with 1,338 points. Utah was second (898), LSU was third (569.5) and Air Force was fourth (423).
Wrapping up their weekend with platform, all four Academy divers scored with senior Nicholas Piontek leading the Falcons by placing ninth overall. Freshman Cole Armagost was 13th, sophomore Kevin Lecours was 14th, and senior Erich Drollinger was 15th.
In the 1650 freestyle, junior Collin Green earned the highest finish for the Falcons in the invitational. With a time of 15:27.28, Green placed second and achieved his NCAA B cut in the mile. Less than a second off his “B” cut, senior Garrett Glaudini placed fourth in 15:31.10. Adding to the depth of the Academy’s distance swimmers, freshman Vinny Vivadelli was 11th (15:53.76), freshman Brady Moll was 13th (15:56.62), sophomore Riley Delahoyde was 15th (16:12.10), and freshman Ryan Klein was 20th (16:46.97).
Senior Joey Gebhart led Air Force in the 200 backstroke with a time of 1:48.29 (12th). Along with Gebhart in the ‘B’ final, freshman Ben Settle finished 14th (1:49.01) and sophomore Cole McAnany was 15th (1:49.93). Freshman Brady Moll returned to finals to swim the event in 1:52.53 (27th) and freshman Daniel Keith returned in 1:56.13 (31st)
The 100 freestyle proved to be another opportunity for junior Steffen Mount to add to his already successful invitational performance. Mount garnered another NCAA “B” cut, swimming 43.23 in prelims and 43.54 in finals, finishing second and tying fellow Green with the highest place at the invitational. The team’s sprinting contingency also included senior Michael Hannigan placing eighth (45.56), senior Lars Knutson for 19th (45.63), and freshman Jack Ayres finishing 20th (45.75).
Sophomore Zach Nelson was shy of his NCAA “B: cut in the 200 breaststroke, finishing eighth in the ‘A’ final with a time of 2:00.16. Three Falcons raced in the ‘B’ final, senior Derek Brecht in 2:02.07 (14th), sophomore Andrew Weiss in 2:02.79 (15th), and freshman Brendan Richichi in 2:04.47 (16th).
The top performance for the Falcons in the 200 butterfly came from freshman Peter Lochmaier, earning a 10th place finish with a time of 1:48.55. Sophomore Kyle Bundesmann was 19th in 1:52.17 and freshman Vinny Vivadelli was 28th in 1:56.40.
Making for an exciting closure, the Falcons were tied with the University of Hawaii going into the last event of the 3-day invitational. Air Force’s ‘A’ and ‘B’ 400 free relays scored enough points to secure a fourth place overall finish, edging out Hawaii. The ‘A’ relay, made of up of Mount, Knutson, McAnany, and Hannigan, placed third with a time of 2:57.32. The Academy’s ‘B’ relay was 10th overall with Orr, Gebhart, Glaudini, and Ayers swimming the race in 3:03.34.
The Falcons will head to Coronado Island for their winter training before the holidays. While in California, the team will face Cal Poly on Friday, Dec. 22 at 11:00 am.
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