BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – The Texas A&M men’s swimming & diving team continued to make history as the Southeastern Conference announced its annual all-conference honors Tuesday afternoon. Kurtis Mathews was named SEC Male Diver of the Year and head diving coach Jay Lerew was named SEC co-Men’s Diving Coach of the Year, marking the first time the Aggies have earned these accolades since joining the league in 2012. Victor Povzner earned co-Male Freshman Diver of the Year, as he was one of 11 Aggies honored by the SEC following the team’s record-setting season.
Mathews also earned All-SEC First Team distinction after he became the first Aggie to sweep the springboard events at the SEC Championships. In doing so, Mathews set a school record in the 1-meter with a score of 436.50. Povzner, also named to the SEC All-Freshman Team, was the top finisher among all league true and redshirt freshmen in both the springboard events at the SEC Championships. He recorded a score of 379.60 in the 3-meter to place fourth in the event, and took eighth in the 1-meter (328.10).
With the success of the student-athletes, Coach Lerew received co-Men’s Diving Coach of the Year for the first time in his career. This marks the fourth time since arriving at A&M that Coach Lerew has earned coach of the year honors.
As top finishers at SEC Championships, Shaine Casas, Adam Koster, Mike Thibert and Benjamin Walker were also named to the All-SEC First Team. Casas was the co-recipient of the Commissioner’s Trophy, which is award to the top point-earner at the SEC Championships. Casas compiled 92 points at the SEC Championships after breaking US Olympian Ryan Lochte’s 200 back SEC record with a time of 1:37.20. Casas also won the 200 IM with a time of 1:39.91 and placed second in the 100 back (44.68), while also helping four relay teams reach the podium. Walker, who just last season was the first A&M swimmer to become an individual SEC Champion, won the 200 breast in school-record fashion to become a two-time champion in the event with a time of 1:51.92. Walker also placed fourth in the 100 breast with a school-record time of 52.00, while contributing on a pair of medaling relay teams. Koster and Thibert assisted in the first-place-finishing 200 medley relay (1:23.49) to earn a school record, pool record and All-SEC First Team.
Among A&M’s other medal finishers at SEC Championships were Clayton Bobo, Kaloyan Bratanov, and Mark Theall, who were all named to the All-SEC Second Team. Andres Puente also made it on the All-SEC Second Team as well as the All-Freshman Team. Appearing in two finals in his debut at the SEC Championships, he earned a second-place finish in the 200 breast (1:52.39).
Texas A&M SEC Honors
Jay Lerew – Co-Men’s Diving Coach of the Year
Kurtis Mathews – Male Diver of the Year, All-SEC First Team
Victor Povzner – Co-Male Freshman Diver of the Year, All-Freshman Team
Shaine Casas – Commissioner’s Trophy, All-SEC First Team
Adam Koster – All-SEC First Team
Mike Thibert – All-SEC First Team
Benjamin Walker – All-SEC First Team
Clayton Bobo – All-SEC Second Team
Kaloyan Bratanov – All-SEC Second Team
Mark Theall – All-SEC Second Team
Andres Puente – All-SEC Second Team, All-Freshman Team
Story courtesy of Texas A&M Athletics