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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Senior night success

No. 8 A&M men’s swim and dive continues historic season with win over No. 25 SMU
Photo by CJ Smith
Sophomore Baylor Nelson surfaces in the Men 200 LC Meter IM during the 2023 Art Adamson Invitational at the Texas A&M Natatorium on Wednesday, Nov. 15, 2023. (CJ Smith/The Battalion)

Coming off a comeback win on the road against LSU on Jan. 20, the No. 8 Texas A&M men’s swimming and diving team defended its home pool on Senior Night against No. 25 SMU on Friday, Feb. 2. The Aggies outscored the Mustangs 190-109 and had overwhelming success on both the board and in the water.

A&M improved to 9-0 with the victory, giving the program its first undefeated run through dual meets since the 1955-56 campaign.

“We knew that it had been a very long time since an A&M men’s team had gone through a dual meet season undefeated,” coach Jay Holmes said. “We are grateful to our team and staff to be able to mark another thing off the list of things that hadn’t happened in a while this season and are hoping this team can continue on with things like that.”

In the 200-yard medley relay, seniors Thomas Shomper and Alex Sanchez, sophomore Connor Foote and junior Seth Reno kicked off the meet with a first-place finish with a time of one minute and 25.35 seconds.

Shomper continued his stellar night with a first-place time of 46.87 in the 100-yard backstroke, while junior Tyler Hulet stayed on his teammate’s trail and earned second at 47.38.

Foote also continued his winning streak, taking first in the 50-yard freestyle with a time of 19.93. In the 100-yard butterfly, Foote took second and clocked in at 46.45.

Next, the Maroon and White earned a 2-3 finish in the 1650-yard freestyle with sophomore Batuhan Filiz touching the wall first at 15:11.45, then junior Trey Dickey followed quickly after, finishing at 15:13.30.

Sophomore Baylor Nelson keeps impressing viewers meet after meet. This time, the North Carolina native led the pack in a first-place finish in the 200-yard freestyle with a time of 1:34.07.

At the last meet in the Bayou, Nelson broke three relay pool records and set the third-fastest time in program history in the 500-yard freestyle at 4:19:06.

Nelson led the Fightin’ Farmers in a top-three sweep in the 200-yard backstroke, clocking in at 1:42.44. Shomper followed suit with a time of 1:42.80 and Hulet rounded them out at 1:45.14.

Once again, Nelson finished his night with his third-top finish in the 400-yard individual medley in 3:45.40.

Another 1-2 finish for A&M came in the 100-yard breaststroke as Sanchez clocked in at 53.34 and freshman Logan Brown came behind him at 53.89.

Moving over to the diving board, the Aggies racked up the first three spots in the 1-meter. Senior Victor Povzner headed off the group with a score of 396.98, followed by junior Allen Bottego at 384.00 and senior Takuto Endo with 306.90.

Povzner continued his reign in the 3-meter, tallying 443.78, with the rest of his team following behind with the next three spots. Junior Rhett Hensley came in second with a score of 368.48, then Bottego behind him with 360.98 and Endo rounding them out with 343.50.

“Diving again made a huge difference for us,” coach Holmes said. “Victor [Povzner] scoring over 400 is awesome. Our group of divers is hard to beat since there seems to be at least one of them going big every outing.

The Aggie divers finished the meet with a clean sweep for the top three spots on both heights of the diving board.

Next, the undefeated Maroon and White will head to the SEC Championships in Auburn, Alabama at the James E. Martin Aquatic Center on Feb. 19-24.

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