Lions enjoy an All-American pool party

The Lions collected one All-America citation and five All-America honorable mentions at the 2007 NCAA Division III Championships hosted by the University of Houston. The men’s team finished in 16th place while the women’s team finished 41st overall.

Senior diver Lee Swanson opened the competition on March 8, with a score of 355.85 in the one-meter event, earning 15th place and an All-America honorable mention. Swanson has had an outstanding diving career at the championships, earning 21st place at last year’s championships.

Sophomore diver Greg Lloyd earned a sixth-place finish in the one-meter event and wrapped up the competition with an overall finish of 18th place with a score of 385.05. In last year’s competition, Lloyd took home 20th in the one-meter event and sixth in the three-meter event as a rookie.

On Saturday, Swanson wrapped up her career by competing in the three-meter dive final. Swanson finished with a score of 377.85 and received her second All-America honor. For her career, Swanson has earned three All-America awards.

Junior Ava Kiss competed in the championships with a time of 57.21 in the 100-meter butterfly trials. Kiss qualified for Friday’s consolation finals with an 11th seed. Kiss performed her fastest time of the year, 57.12, to take home ninth place and an All-America honorable mention. Kiss took home fourth place in 2006 and ninth place in the 2005 championships.

Kiss earned 24th place in 2:11.62 in the 200-meter butterfly and placed 34th nationally in the 100-meter freestyle with a time of 53.83. Kiss is a three time All-American.

For the men, the 200-meter medley relay team of junior Kevin Oliver, freshman Myles O’Connor, junior Josh Forsman and senior Kyle King combined to finish in seventh place with a time of 1:33.64 in the finals.

“The team is universally happy with our performance,” Forsman said.

Liam Gallagher, King, Forsman and sophomore Tom Nawrot took 15th place in the 800-meter freestyle relay with a time of 6:57.60. The relay team was awarded All-America honorable mentions.

“We have taken a different approach to our training this year,” Gallagher said. “It really paid off this past weekend and also at the conference meet.”

Gallagher explained how assistant coach Dan Schupsky has been such an important part of this team.

“(Schupsky) is finishing his second year as our assistant and has had a tremendous impact on the success of our team,” Gallagher said. “He was a 17-time All-American here at the College and his wealth of knowledge about swimming and strategy is directly correlated to our success this year.”

Forsman placed 15th in the 100-meter butterfly with a time of 50.39 and was awarded All-America honorable mention. Nawrot finished the 100-meter backstroke trials earning 21st with a time of 52.80.

“It went pretty well,” Forsman said. “I didn’t end up with a best time, but it was an amazing experience and hope it will help me next year.”

Myles O’Connor finished 17th in the 100-meter breaststroke in 57.66 falling short of the consolation finals.

The men’s 400-meter freestyle relay team picked up an All-America honorable mention after a 12th-place finish, with a time of 3:04.98. The combined efforts included Nawrot, Gallagher, Forsman and King.

On the final day of competition, Gallagher earned 22nd place in the 200-meter breaststroke, finishing the race in 1:55.40. King placed 25th in the 100-meter freestyle in 45.65 and Nawrot took home 37th place in 47.42. O’Connor placed 26th in 2:09.54 in the 200-meter breaststroke, and Forsman placed 26th in the 200-meter butterfly.

“We had a young team this season and still preformed well at the national level,” Forsman said. “So with almost everyone coming back next season we should have a more dominant presence at that level.”