SHENANDOAH, Texas – In three events that Claremont-Mudd-Scripps men's swimmers participated in during the opening day of the 2015 NCAA Division III Swimming & Diving Championships on March 17 at the Conroe Natatorium, program and conference records fell. As records were toppled, CMS swimmers on Wednesday tallied 54 points which put the team in fifth place overall after the first day of competition. After the first day of competition last season, the Stags were in eighth and they went on to finish in seventh place.
In the first men's finals event, the 500-yard freestyle championship final, senior Cameron Whiting placed seventh with a time of 4:30.51 to earn All-America status. In the morning 500 free preliminaries, Whiting set a CMS varsity and SCIAC record in the event with a time of 4:28.11, besting his previous CMS and conference record set earlier this season by over a second.
Later in the evening, junior Alex Poltash swam his way to a fifth place finish and All-America honors in the 50-yard freestyle championship final with a time of 20.21, matching his morning preliminary time. With both swims, Poltash took down the 10-year-old CMS and SCIAC record in the event by one-tenth of a second. With a time of 20.22, Andrew Cox of CMS has held the record since 2005.
To close out the first day of swimming, the 200-yard medley relay team of sophomore Matthew Williams, junior Zach Alleva, senior Patrick Shultz and junior Joseph Hinton touched the wall with a time of 1:29.59 to finish in fifth and also become All-Americans. They also set a CMS and SCIAC record in the event, besting their record time from the NCAAs last year, when they finished in sixth place.
On a side note, in the 200-yard individual medley, the 17-year-old NCAA Division III record which had been held by CMS' Gary Simon since 1998, also fell. Swimmers from Emory, Mary Washington and Johns Hopkins all bested Simon's time of 1:46.97. Emory's Andrew Wilson set the new NCAA record with a time of 1:46.23.
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