Pirates Repeat As American Conference Men’s Swimming & Diving Champions

Day four of the 2015 American Athletic Conference Swimming & Diving Championships at the Campus Recreation and Wellness Center Natatorium in Houston, TX on Saturday February 20, 2016. (Ben Solomon/American Athletic Conference)

HOUSTON (ECU Media Relations) — The East Carolina men’s swimming and diving team completed a wire-to-wire victory on Saturday at the 2016 American Athletic Conference Championships to claim its second consecutive conference title.

The Pirates rolled up 907 points during the four-day event, nearly 80 points ahead of second-place SMU (828.5). Cincinnati (680.5) claimed third-place, while UConn (645.0) finished in fourth-place.

ECU recorded 19 medal finishes during the championship, including four gold medal performances. Will Hicks earned three individual medals, including a pair of gold medals. Julien Dodu, Michael Dugan, and Fran Krznaric each claimed two individual medals.

ECU Head Coach Rick Kobe was named The American Men’s Coach-of-the-Year for the second consecutive year, while Ryan Hunt was voted the conference’s Men’s Diving Coach-of-the-Year for the first time.

Saturday’s meet began with Dugan earning the silver medal in the 1650-yard freestyle with an ECU record and NCAA B qualifying time of 15:21.18.

The Pirates finished one, two in the 200-yard backstroke with Krznaric winning gold by 62-hundredths of second over teammate Boleck De Pawlikowski with both recording NCAA B qualifying times. Krznaric touched in an ECU record time of 1:43.24.

Hicks claimed his second gold of meet with a win in the 200-yard breaststroke (1:57.25), touching 67-hundredths of a second in front of UConn’s Mark Hunter.

ECU concluded the night with a silver medal in the 400-yard freestyle relay.

The Pirate ladies squad finished in fifth-place with 515.5 points. SMU won the women’s championships with 681 points followed by Tulane (637.5), Houston (554) and Cincinnati (536). UConn finished in sixth-place with 457 points.

Vendel Normann claimed the lone gold medal for ECU Saturday night with a school record time of 2:12.04, 47-hundredths of a second ahead of runner-up Tara Nicholas of SMU.

Bailie Monahan captured her second bronze medal of the championship with a third-place finish in the 200-yard butterfly.


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