COLUMBUS, Ohio The No. 11 Ohio State men’s swimming and diving team shined on day one of the 2008 Ohio State Invitational, winning four out of six events. The Buckeyes lead the field of 13 teams with 379.5 points.

“I am really pleased with the way our team competed tonight,” Bill Wadley, head men’s swimming coach, said. “There are some excellent swimmers and teams in the meet and I’m proud how the guys took on the challenge and stepped up.”

The team top-five standings after day one look like this: Ohio State is followed by Minnesota (276.5), Penn State (200), Notre Dame (132) and Cleveland State (87).

The evening opened up with a terrific first event in the 200-yard freestyle relay. Ohio State finished just .62 behind the winning Minnesota squad. The Gophers finished in an NCAA “B” time of 1:19.00, while the Buckeye quad of junior Joel Elber, junior Andrew Bretscher, freshman Lincoln Fahrbach and senior Felipe Travesso took second in a “B” time of 1:19.62.

The night kept getting better as the 500 freestyle saw another exciting neck-and-neck finish. Junior George Markovic bested Minnesota’s Ray Betuzzi by .02, setting a new meet record in an NCAA “B” time of 4:22.62. Classmates Stefan Sigrist (4:23.97) and Mark Neiman (4:24.53) also earned “B” times and finished third and fourth. Senior Jacob Busch took eighth (4:30.25).

Adding to the Buckeye win column was Niksa Roki in the 200 individual medley. The junior captured first in a meet record and an NCAA “B” time of 1:45.87, while breaking the school record set by Nate King (1:46.29) in the spring of 2007.

“I didn’t expect to break the record,” Roki, from Zagreb, Croatia, said. “I just wanted to concentrate on my turns. I saw the others behind me and I knew I was on the right track.”

Also representing Ohio State in the 200 IM final were sophomore Justin Farra, freshman Markus Sievers, junior Andrew Olson and freshman Austin Mudd. Farra finished fourth, Sievers took fifth, Olson swam in at sixth and Mudd finished seventh.

In the 50 freestyle, Elber and Minnesota’s Colin Lee-To swam to a first-place tie in 20.15. Fahrbach took fifth in 20.40.

Taking a break from the competition pool, the Buckeye one-meter diving trio was led by junior Burkley Showe, who finished second with 395.05 points. Sophomore Sean Moore took fourth (349.75) and junior Ryan Jefferson finished eighth (307.95).

Capping off the night was another tight finish in the 400-medley relay. The team of freshman Andrew Elliott, Travesso, Bretscher and Elber outlasted Penn State to take first in a “B” time of 3:12.99.

The Ohio State Swimming and Diving Invite continues Saturday at the McCorkle Aquatic Pavilion. Preliminaries begin at 10 a.m. and finals are at 5 p.m. There is no admission charge to watch the action. 
Ohio State Swimming and Diving Invite
Friday, Dec. 5, 2008
McCorkle Aquatic Pavilion; Columbus, Ohio
Team Scores: 1. Ohio State 379.5; 2. Minnesota 285.5; 3. Penn State 200; 4. Notre Dame 132; 5. Cleveland State 87; 6. Purdue 44; 7. Miami (Fla.) 16; 8. Duke 7; 9. Indiana 5.
Friday Event Winners: 200 freestyle relay 1. Minnesota (1:19.00); 2. Elber, Bretscher, Fahrbach, Travesso Ohio State (1:19.62); 500 freestyle 1. Markovic, Ohio State (4:27.48); 200 individual medley 1. Roki, Ohio State (1:45.87); 50 freestyle T1. Elber, Ohio State (20.15); T1. Lee-To, Minnesota (20.15) One-meter diving 1. Boudia, Purdue (419.85); 2. Showe, Ohio State (395.05); 400 medley relay 1. Elliott, Travesso, Bretscher, Elber Ohio State (3:12.99).