Credit to Rachel Perreault | Director, Athletics Communications
MINNEAPOLIS – Three Aggies were named All-Americans as the No. 12 Texas A&M men’s swimming & diving team continued its impressive performance at NCAA Championships at Jean K. Freeman Aquatic Center on Thursday.
Baylor Nelson earned his first individual career All-America award as he notched seventh in the 200 IM Championship Final, registering a 1:40.88. Nelson is the first freshman swimmer in school history to finish top eight at NCAAs.
Also competing in the 200 IM prelims were Kaloyan Bratanov (1:42.82), Andres Puente (1:43.94) and Anze Fers Erzen (1:45.11). Representing A&M in the 50 free was Connor Foote, recording a 19.59.
Allen Bottego and Victor Povzner qualified for the 1-meter A-final, the first time since 2011 that A&M had two Aggies in the top eight of the same event. Povzner became a two-time All-American as he placed sixth, scoring 390.00. This marked Povzner’s first NCAA top-eight finish of his career. Bottego placed eighth with a score of 330.50, claiming his first career All-America distinction.
To cap off day two, the 200 free relay team of Bratanov, Foote, Nelson and Ethan Gogulski placed 17th with a time of 1:16.70. Bratanov recorded a season-best time of 19.53 in the 50 free while Gogulski swam the fifth-fastest split in Texas A&M history, 18.84.
The Aggies return to the pool tomorrow at 10 a.m. for prelims. Continuing IM action, Nelson and Fers Erzen will be competing in the 400. Foote will take on the 100 fly, Bratanov will race in the 200 free and Gogulski in the 100 back. Additionally, Puente and Alex Sanchez prepare for competition in the 100 breast. Following the swim prelims, Takuto Endo, Rhett Hensley and Povzner will take on the 3-meter. Finals will begin at 6 p.m. for Aggies that advance and the 400 medley relay.
Post Meet Quotes
Head Coach Jay Holmes
On A&M’s performance …
“I’m really proud of our guys that scored tonight. Baylor [Nelson] continues to have a great freshman year. Scoring in the top eight at NCAA Championships is a credit to him being who he is and all the work he has done to get here. Our two divers scoring tonight was awesome. To see Allen Bottego get to the Championship Final and to see Victor Povzner continue to be the guy this year for us in these situations. We had a lot to be happy about tonight.”
On looking forward to Friday …
“We have two more full days of this thing ahead of us and a lot of questions that need to be answered. We’ll see how good we really are and how well we can keep on task with all of our events. Tomorrow morning, we have someone entered in every single event, which doesn’t happen for many teams at the NCAA Championship meet. We are looking forward to tomorrow and it should be a good day.”