Men's Swimming, Diving Set For NCAAs
March 25, 2009
The USC men's swimming and diving team, led by senior Vanni Mangoni, juniors Zoltan Povazsay and co-captain James Martin, and freshman Pac-10 diving champion Harrison Jones, are set for the 2009 NCAA Championships Thursday through Saturday (March 26-28) at Texas A&M's Student Rec Center Natatorium in College Station, Texas.
Live NCAA Championships results will be available at Texas A&M's home site. Prelims begin at 12 p.m. each day, finals at 7 p.m. (CST).
Video coverage can be found at SwimmingWorld.com, where the meet will be streamed live. The last night of finals will be shown on ESPN360. Swimmingworld.com and ESPN.com will provide links to the ESPN360 coverage.
NCAA SWIMMING AND DIVING CHAMPIONSHIP NOTES
USC has won a combined 112 NCAA titles, including 94 individually and 18 on relays ... USC has won at least one NCAA title in six of the past eight seasons ... Senior Vanni Mangoni is a former NCAA finalist in the 400y IM, going fifth in 2007 ... Sophomore Steven Starks is USC's lone returning individual point scorer (after he finished 16th on platform last year) ... Freshman Harrison Jones (a 2009 Pac-10 champion on platform) and Starks will try to become the eighth and ninth divers under 10th-year diving head coach Hongping Li to earn All-American honors ... Senior Kevin Bartell returns to the NCAAs for the first time since he was a 2006 sophomore at Florida Atlantic, when he was a consolation finalist in the 100y breast ... Junior Zoltan Povazsay was an All-American (on a relay) as a freshman at West Virginia in 2007. He was third at the 2009 Pac-10s in the 200y free, his best bet to earn individual All-American honors ... Sophomore Dillon Connolly is among five Trojans making their NCAA debut. He broke USC's school record in the 200y breast (1:55.47) at the 2009 Pac-10 Championships ... USC also broke the school record this year in the 200y free relay (1:18.11).
SEASON IN BRIEF
USC finished the 2009 dual meet season at 4-3 overall, 2-3 in the Pac-10, making big strides from the previous year ... At the 2009 Pac-10 Championships, Povazsay was a two-time finalist (200y, 500y free), junior James Martin and senior were 400y IM finalists, divers Jones and Starks were finalists in all three specialties (as was Greg Miller on platform) and freshman Josh Joiner was a finalist in the 200y fly ...USC was 4-1, 2-1 before squaring off against Pac-10 juggernauts Stanford and Cal. The men fell at Stanford, 213-86, on Feb. 7, and dropped a meet to the Bears, 157-130, on Feb. 6. USC suffered its first loss of the season against Washington on Jan. 23, 141-112. Prior to that, the Trojans competed in the SMU Classic, finishing sixth. Troy opened the 2009 spring slate with a 120-85 win over UC Santa Barbara. In early December, USC competed in the 2008 Husky Invite, where the Trojans finished second overall. Before that, USC posted a major upset over defending national champion Arizona, 152-91, and also defeated Arizona State, 187-48. The Trojans began the season with a 159.5-126.5 victory over visiting Notre Dame.
MEN'S NOTES HEADING INTO THE SEASON
The Trojans, looking to rebound from a tough 2008, return two swimmers with NCAA Championship experience: 2006 and 2007 All-American senior Vanni Mangoni and senior Ankur Poseria. Sophomore diver Steven Starks also competed at the NCAAs and was USC's lone NCAA point scorer (platform).
Mangoni and junior James Martin return as Troy's 2008 Pac-10 Championships swimming finalists. Mangoni won the Pac-10 title in the 400y IM while Martin was eighth in the same event.
Starks was a three-time diving finalist at the Pac-10s, finishing as high as second on platform, while then-freshman Derek Roth also reached the finals on platform.
Troy's men's roster includes a pair of 2008 Olympians. Poseria represented India while junior Povazsay represented Hungary. Poseria competed in the 100m fly while Povazsay was on the roster as a relay swimmer in the 4x200m free, but did not race.