CLEARWATER, FLA. – Juniors Noah Franz and Luis Jasso had runner-up finishes in the final two individual races, and the Moccasins added third-place finishes in three other events on the final day of the 2016 Spartan Invitational.
Indian River State was able to hold off Tampa for the team title, outscoring the Spartans in the final standings by 17½ points (955-937½). Nova Southeastern was third with 830½ points, and Florida Southern was fourth with 763. Lenoir-Rhyne finished fifth with 181 points, and Rollins was sixth with 44.
HOW IT HAPPENED:
- With Florida Southern competing in the 1,650-freestyle for the first time this season, sophomore Luka Planinc finished third in that event with an NCAA provisional qualifying time of 15:54.29. The 1,650 was won by Franco Lupoli in 15:20.27, an NCAA automatic qualifying time. The Sharks had four of the top eight swimmers in the 1,650.
- Senior Marco Palacios placed third in the 200-backstroke and had a provisional time of 1:48.12. Senior Evan Coleman, who finished eighth missed a provisional time by four-tenths of a second. Marco Aldabe of Nova Southeastern won the 200-back in 1:46.04
- Florida Southern had three swimmers advance to the championship finals of the 100-freestyle, led by Franz who was runner-up to Tampa's Martin Hammer, who posted a winning time of 44.63 seconds. Franz (45.08), senior Diego Gimenez (45.43) and sophomore Nico Campbell (45.64) all had NCAA provisional qualifying times, though Gimenez and Campbell had slightly better times in prelims.
- The Moccasins had another runner-up in the 200-breaststroke as Jasso clocked in at 1:57.03, which was 1.15 seconds behind Anton Lobanov from Nova Southeastern, though still an NCAA provisional qualifying time. Sophomores Sean Kim and Matthew Holmes were fifth and sixth respectively after Kim missed his own provisional time by one tenth of a second during the prelims Monday morning.
- Senior Antonio Nunez-Alvarez was the only point producer in the 200-butterfly, placing fifth in a time of 1:52.13. Earlier in the day though, he swam a 1:48.55 in prelims, which gave him an NCAA "B" time in that event. Gabriele Sasia of Indian River State won the 200-fly in 1:47.29.
- In the only relay race of the night, Florida Southern's 400-freestyle team of Franz, Gimenez, Campbell and Palacios finished third in 2:59.17, which gave the Moccasins an NCAA "B" time. The Moccasins' second entry in the 400-freestyle relay, which featured Holmes, junior Luka Matacin, Nunez-Alvarez and Planinc, almost had an NCAA "B" time too, falling just 0.07 seconds short. Nova Southeastern won the event in 2:57.16.
INSIDE THE NUMBERS:
- Sophomores Charles Gotsch and Esteban Velasquez, and freshman Jonathan Sawyer finished 1.4 seconds apart in the 1,650-freestyle, joining Planinc as point scorers in that event.
- Matacin and freshman Talor Hamilton reached the consolation finals of the 200-backstroke, and Matacin was a little over half a second short of an NCAA "B" time.
- The fastest time recorded by any swimmer in the 100-freestyle came from Thiago Sickert of Nova Southeastern who nearly had an automatic qualifying time. However, it came in the consolation finals after he finished 10th in prelims.
- Florida Southern will break for Christmas before returning to action on Saturday, January 7, for a dual meet against Emory at the Hollis Wellness Center Pool beginning at noon.