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LWC swimming finishes eighth at National Championships

Jonas Mueller of Herten, Germany, earns first NAIA Men's Swimming All-American honor in program history
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By Charles Mueller
News from Lindsey Wilson College Swimming

COLUMBUS, GA - Jonas Mueller became the first NAIA All-American in Lindsey Wilson men's swimming program history on Saturday night during the fourth and final day of competition at the 2017 NAIA Swimming & Diving National Championships.

The junior from Herten, Germany raced his way to a school-record time of two minutes and 3.57 seconds in the championship finals to capture third place in the 200-yard breaststroke.

As a team, the Blue Raiders racked up 216 total points over the four-day competition to match the best-finish in program history. Lindsey Wilson also placed eighth at the 2015-16 championships.

Clemens Paetzold narrowly missed out on adding his name to the list of individual NAIA All-Americans after placing fourth in the 200-yard backstroke. He had originally qualified for the finals in seventh with a time of 1:52.06. He was able to trim that time down to a school-record 1:51.53, finishing behind the third-place time of 1:50.02, one spot shy of All-American status. Michael Peck also competed in the 200 backstroke prelims, clocking in at 2:00.52 in 25th place.

The men's 400-yard freestyle relay team of Jose Prado de Lima, Zachary Patzer, Paetzold and Iker Larzabal advanced to the championship finals after their qualifying time of 3:06.54 was the sixth fastest. The qualification of the finals meant that all five men's relay teams, along with all five Blue Raider women's relay teams, advance to the championship race for the first time in program history. During Larzabal's opening leg of the 400 free relay, he set a new school record in the 100-yard freestyle in his final swim as a Blue Raider.

In the title race, the Blue Raiders improved their school-record time to 3:05.83 to capture eighth place.

Prado de Lima got the night session started for the Blue Raiders with a 10th-place finish in the 1,650-yard freestyle with his time of 16:24.65 seconds. Peck also competed in the event, finishing in 16th place to secure one team point for the Blue Raiders with a new personal best.

Patzer qualified for the evening finals for the first time in his career after his ninth-fastest time of 46.45 put him in the consolation finals. He just missed out on the cut for the championship finals by 0.19 seconds. Larzabal just missed out on joining Patzer in the consolation finals but he fell one spot shy in the prelims in 17th place after his time of 46.91 seconds. In the evening consolations, Patzer finished in 16th place with a time of 47.19.

Travis Durocher added a 24th-place finish on the night in the 200-yard butterfly.

Olivet Nazarene (IL) captured the men's team championship with 658.5 total team points. SCAD Savannah (GA) finished as the runner-up with 443 points, while Keiser (FL) finished third with 397 points.

This story was posted on 2017-03-05 06:24:27
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