NCAA Championships Awaits 14 Rebels
March 18, 2013
LAS VEGAS (UNLVRebels.com) - The UNLV men's and women's teams will send a total of 14 swimmers to the 2013 NCAA Championships that are being held in Indianapolis, Ind., this week and next week. The two three-day meets will take place at IU Natatorium, will preliminaries beginning at 8 am (PT) each day and the finals starting at 4 pm (PT). The night finals on the second and third days of both championships will be streamed live on ESPN3.com. The women's meet runs from Thursday-Saturday, while the men's championships are being held on Thursday-Saturday, March 28-30.
Two Rebels from the women's squad qualified individually for their events. Junior Katelyne Herrington, who placed 14th at the NCAA championships in 2012, makes a repeat trip to the national meet and is seeded 17th in the 100 fly, which will be held on Friday. Senior Carmen Robb meanwhile is at the championships for the first time in her career, and will swim in the 100 fly (seeded 56th), the 100 back (ranked 23th), both on Friday. She will also compete in the 200 back (39th) on Saturday.
Also making the trip to Indianapolis as relay participants are juniors Rachel Dixon and Jessica Heim and seniors Nakayla Chan and Brittany Ozar. UNLV will compete in three relay events, one on each day, beginning with Thursday's 400 medley relay. UNLV is seeded 27th coming into the week, and the team will be made up of Robb, Chan, Herrington and Dixon. Swimming in the 200 medley (20th) on Friday will be the same four, while on Saturday in the 400 free event, the Rebels (26th) relay members will be Herrington, Ozar, Heim and Dixon.
The UNLV women placed 43rd at last year's NCAA meet, while its top finish all-time was 24th in 1986.
The eight swimmers from the 25th-ranked men's team ties a program high, along with the 2011 squad. This year's team also qualified four swimmers individually in their events, while the other four will be a part of five relays UNLV will compete in. Leading the group is junior Giacomo Gremizzi, who will compete in a team-high three events. First he will swim the 200 IM, in which he is seeded 49th, on March 28, followed by the 400 IM (18th) on March 29 and the 200 breast (40th) on March 30.
Swimming in two events will be junior David Szele, the 100 breast on March 29 where he is seeded 29th, and the 200 breast on March 30 (42nd). Next is senior Cody Roberts, back for his fourth straight championships. A two-time honorable mention All-American in the 100 fly, he comes into this year's national meet ranked 28th in the 100 fly, which he will swim on March 29. The fourth Rebel that qualified individually is sophomore Balint Batka, who comes into the meet ranked 27th in the 200 fly (March 30).
Of the four Rebels coming to swim on the relays, three are freshmen (Henrique Machado, Tom Paco-Pedroni and Dillon Virva) while the fourth is a sophomore, Samuel Lameynardie. The final lineups are not set for all five relays, but the expected lineup for the 200 free relay on March 28 is Virva, Paco-Pedroni, Lameynardie or Szele, and Roberts as the anchor. UNLV will swim another relay on the first day of the meet, the 400 medley, which will consist of Machado, Szele, Roberts and Lameynardie.
March 29 will be the 200 medley relay, made up of Machado, Szele, Roberts and Virva, while on the same day the quartet of Lameynardie, Paco-Pedroni, Batka and Gremizzi will swim in the 800 free relay event. The meet will conclude on March 30 with the 400 free relay, with five Rebels being considered for the four spots (Paco-Pedroni, Virva, Gremizzi, Roberts and Lameynardie). The rankings for the five relays coming into the championships are: 200 free (23rd), 400 medley (20th), 200 medley (12th), 800 free (30th) and the 400 free (28th).
UNLV is coming into the championships off a season in which it finished 81-1 in dual meets and won its first Mountain Pacific Sports Federation championship. The Rebels' best finish all-time at the NCAAs is 19th at the 2011 championships.
Links to the live results for both championship meets will be available at UNLVRebels.com.