Men’s swimming takes fifteenth at NCAA playoffs

Sophomore Mike Harmon earned All-American honors in both the 200-back and the 400-free relay on the final day of the NCAA Championships. (Photo by David Sinclair)

Sophomore Mike Harmon earned All-American honors in both the 200-back and the 400-free relay on the final day of the NCAA Championships. (Photo by David Sinclair)

Courtesy of GCC&M

The Gettysburg College men’s swimming team closed the 2012-13 season with an exclamation point on the final day of the NCAA Division Championships on Saturday at the Conroe ISD Natatorium.

On the final day alone, the Bullets broke three school and Centennial Conference records and captured three All-America honors. In the final team standings, Gettysburg finished with a team score of 65, finishing 15th among 49 teams that scored points. It is the Bullets second-straight top-15 performance at the national meet after taking 14th last season.

The 400-freestyle relay team of Sophomores Jason Potter (New Canaan, Conn./New Canaan), Mike Harmon (Shippensburg, Pa./home-schooled), Stu Cubbison (Lancaster, Pa./Lancaster Catholic) and Ashton Leyens (Fort Washington, Pa./Upper Dublin) turned in Gettysburg’s highest finish of the meet, taking sixth in 3:00.92 to capture First Team All-America honors for the second year in a row after placing seventh last season. Their sixth-place finish is the top performance by the men’s swimming team at the NCAA Championships since the 200-freestyle relay team was also sixth in 1998.

Meanwhile, Potter and Harmon turned in one All-America Honorable Mention performance apiece, with Potter taking ninth in the 100-freestyle and Harmon placing 15th in the 200-backstroke.

For the meet, Gettysburg finished with six All-America honors, five school records, and five Centennial Conference records.

Potter turned in an incredible all-around performance on Saturday, breaking or tying a record in each of his four swims. He started the day in preliminaries by setting the school and Centennial Conference record in the 100-freestyle with a time of 45.08 seconds, bettering the former mark of 45.23 set by Matt Libby ‘12 in 2011. His time gained him the last spot in the consolation final. Potter then lowered the Gettysburg and conference records again in the leadoff leg of the 400-freestyle relay, clocking a 44.88. His time helped the relay team reset the school and Centennial Conference record in 3:00.92 while earning a spot in the championship final with a seventh-place finish.

Also in the preliminaries, Harmon reset his own school and Centennial Conference records in the 200-backstroke, finishing 10th in 1:49.26. In addition, Leyens came in 37th in the 100-freestyle in 45.89.

Potter went on to win the consolation final and place ninth overall, slashing another 0.21 seconds from his school record with a time of 44.67. Harmon placed seventh in the consolation final and 15th overall in the 200-back with his mark of 1:50.67.

In the championship final, the 400-freestyle relay team capped the night and the season by matching their time from the prelims. Potter clocked the fastest split with a 44.91, followed by Leyens (45.19), Cubbison (45.34), and Harmon (45.48).

Gettysburg’s banner 2012-13 season also included a Centennial Conference title and an undefeated Centennial Conference dual meet record of 6-0.

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Author: AnnaMarie Houlis

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