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Dec. 17, 2013

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COLUMBUS, Ohio – While the 11th-ranked men’s swimming and diving team prepares for the second half of its 2013-14 campaign, the times that the squad posted in the first half of the season has it positioned among the nation’s elite. 

The Buckeyes’ efforts are highlighted by top-10 times from senior Alex Miller, junior Connor McDonald, junior Tamas Gercsak and two relay groups – the 800 freestyle relay team (Miller, sophomore Michael DiSalle, freshman Steffen Hillmer and sophomore Josh Fleagle) and the 200 medley relay team (McDonald, Keanu Stevenson, Matt McHugh and Fleagle). All but one of Ohio State’s top times came at the Ohio State Invitational, which was held Nov. 22-24.

In the 200 backstroke, McDonald’s time of 1:40.83 is currently the second fastest in the nation. In addition, it is a school record and NCAA “A” cut time. In addition, McDonald’s time of 46.79 in the 100 backstroke is the 14th fastest nationally thus far.

Miller swam the 1000 freestyle in a time of 9:09.36 against Virginia Tech, Denison and Cleveland State on Nov. 1 and it is currently the ninth fastest time nationally. Miller also has the 22nd fastest time in the 1650 freestyle (15:10.55).

In the 400 individual medley, Gercsak clocked a 3:45.49 at the Ohio State Invitational, good for ninth fastest nationally. His time of 1:45.24 in the 200 butterfly is also 26th nationally.

The Buckeyes have been particularly strong in the relay event, registering times in the 200, 400 and 800 freestyle relays that are all in the top-25. Additionally, both the 200 yard medley relay and 400 medley relay teams have top-20 times.

In the 200 medley relay, the team of McDonald, Stevenson, McHugh and Fleagle clocked a time of 1:25.57 (an NCAA “A” cut) at the Ohio State Invitational, good for third nationally. The 400 medley relay team of Garrett Trebilcock, Stevenson, McHugh and Fleagle touched the wall in 3:11.25, the 16th fastest time this year.

The 800 freestyle relay team of Hillmer, Fleagle, Miller and DiSalle swam a 6:27.77 at the Ohio State Invitational, good for 10th nationally. Fleagle, Hillmer, DiSalle and freshman Vladislav Komarov have the 12th fastest time in the 400 freestyle relay and the same team is also 22nd in the 200 freestyle relay (1:19.68).

Ohio State is No. 11 in the latest College Swimming Coaches Association of America (CSCAA) Division I team rankings, one of six Big Ten schools in the poll.

On hiatus for the month of December, Ohio State will return to competition on Jan. 17-18 at the Kenyon Winter Invitational.

Top Buckeye Times Nationally: 50 yard freestyle – 38. Josh Fleagle (19.93); 100 yard freestyle – 27. Josh Fleagle (43.59), 30. Michael DiSalle (43.61); 200 yard freestyle – 20. Michael DiSalle (1:35.57); 500 yard freestyle – 28. Rowan Williams (4:20.97), 32. Alex Miller (4:21.24); 1000 yard freestyle – 9. Alex Miller (9:09.36); 1650 yard freestyle – 22. Alex Miller (15:10.55); 100 yard backstroke – 14. Connor McDonald (46.79); 200 yard backstroke – 2. Connor McDonald (1:40.83); 100 yard breaststroke – 35. Keanu Stevenson (54.06); 200 yard breaststroke – 40. Chris Cowley (1:58.44); 100 yard butterfly – 31. Matt McHugh (47.15); 200 yard butterfly – 26. Tamas Gercsak (1:45.24); 200 yard individual medley – 24. Steven Zimmerman (1:45.84); 400 yard individual medley – 9. Tamas Gercsak (3:45.49); 200 yard freestyle relay – 22. Fleagle, DiSalle, Hillmer, Komarov (1:19.68); 400 yard freestyle relay – 12. Fleagle, DiSalle, Hillmer, Komarov (2:53.85); 800 freestyle relay – 10. Hillmer, Fleagle, Miller, DiSalle (6:27.77); 200 yard medley relay – 3. McDonald, Stevenson, McHugh, Fleagle (1:25.57); 400 yard medley relay – 16. Trebilcock, Stevenson, McHugh, Fleagle (3:11.25)