MIT Men's Swimming Heading to Texas for NCAAs

Senior Tony Chen
Senior Tony Chen

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – Sixteen members of the No. 1 nationally ranked MIT men's swimming and diving team have been invited to the 2013 NCAA Division III Swimming and Diving Championships, which is set to take place in Shenandoah, Texas, from Wednesday, March 20 through Saturday, March 23. This is both the most swimmers the institution has ever sent to the meet before and the team with the most swimmers present. Kenyon College, who won the national title from 1980-2010, is close behind with its 14 swimmers. The 2011 and 2012 champion, Denison University, is also sending 14 athletes.

The Engineers, who won their fifth straight New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) championship title at the end of last month, saw all five of their relays qualify for the meet. The 400-yard medley relay, which will be swam on the second day of competition, is seeded in first place, just two-tenths of a second ahead of Kenyon's relay.

Senior Wyatt Ubellacker (Georgetown, Ky.), who was named the NEWMAC Swimmer of the Year, qualified in all three of his events, the 50-yard freestyle, 100-yard freestyle and 100-yard butterfly. He is seeded in second place in the 50 free and third in the 100 fly; he claimed third in both events at last year's championship. Ubellacker will be part of four relays in his fourth and final trip to NCAAs.

Classmate Brendan Deveney (Newtown, Conn.), who wrapped up the NEWMAC championship with three individual first place finishes and two NEWMAC records, qualified in all three of his events. His time of 1:49.08 in the 200-yard Individual Medley seeds him first, almost a full second ahead of Carlos Maciel from Denison. He is seeded 28th in the 100-yard breaststroke and eighth in the 200-yard backstroke and will also be part of four relays throughout the week.

On the first day, six Engineers will swim in the 50 free: Ubellacker, junior Craig Cheney (Sherwood, Ore.) in 20th, sophomores Austin Fathman (Hamilton, Mich.) and Brendon Chiu (Monterey Park, Calif.) in 22nd and 25th respectively, senior Tony Chen (Clemmons, N.C.) in 32nd and freshman Bradford Jokubaitis (Newtown, Pa.) in 47th. Junior Remy Mock (Victoria, British Columbia) and freshman Thomas Norris (Cincinnati, Ohio) will compete in the 500-yard freestyle, and Deveney and freshmen Alex Lednev (Glenmont, N.Y.) and Luke Schlueter (St. Louis, Mo.) will swim the 200 IM. Freshman Kale Rogers (Newberg, Ore.) will join teammates in the 200-yard medley relay.

On Thursday, Lednev will start the day off as the lone MIT swimmer in the 400-yard Individual Medley. Sophomore Ben Bauchwitz (Hershey, Pa.), freshman Sean Corcoran (Huntersville, N.C.), Schlueter and Ubellacker will follow with the 100 fly and Chen, Mock and Norris will wrap up the day with the 200-yard freestyle. On Friday, Schlueter, Norris and Mock will compete in the 200-yard butterfly. Freshman Bo Mattix (La Canada, Calif.) will make his NCAA debut in the 100-yard backstroke, where he is seeded third. He will be joined by Corcoran and Jokubaitis in the event. In the 100-yard breaststroke, MIT will be represented by junior Michael Liao (Newport Beach, Calif.), who is seeded 12th, Bauchwitz in 24th and Deveney in 28th.

On the final day of competition, Ubellacker, Cheney, Fathman and Chen start things off in the 100 free. In the 200-yard backstroke, Deveney and Lednev are seeded in eighth and ninth, Mattix is 18th and Corcoran is 26th. Liao and Bauchwitz will wrap up the individual swims with the 200-yard breaststroke, where they are seeded in seventh and ninth respectively.

MIT, who finished in fourth place at last year's championship, will kick off the four-day, eight-session meet on Wednesday with the 500 free, which is set to start soon after 11:00 a.m.