Las Vegas, Neva. – UC Santa Barbara men's swim team was victorious at the UNLV Invitational this weekend. After three days of competition the men finished in first with 1020 points, followed by Cal Poly in second with 675 points and UOP in third with 588 points. The men swam fast and it was exciting to see the impact the rookies had on the team.
"I am very proud of our team and all we accomplished the past three days," said Head Coach Matt Macedo. "While we got off to a slow start and didn't have the opening session we had hoped for, the team found a way to build on each session and Friday evening and Saturday were quite good. Not only did we have some great swims, we were able to watch 18 first year athletes get their first chance to represent UCSB at a big meet and had some of our athletes compete pain-free after dealing with fall injuries. We talk about our fall invitational being a rehearsal of the conference championships in February and if this is a sign of what's to come, I am very excited to see what this group will do after our winter training camp and the conference dual meet season in January."
Senior Captain Logan Hotchkiss touched at a 4:14.55 in the 500 freestyle, getting the men's team fired up on the first event of the meet. This beats his own school record and sets himself up for a good chance of qualifying for the NCAA Championship later in March. Hotchkiss has consistently won the distance events in dual meets and has continued to show his dominance in the pool at Vegas. In finals over the three days, Hotchkiss secured two individual victories for himself in the 200 freestyle (1:34.93), and the 1650 free (15:03.30).
"I feel the team had a solid showing for our midseason meet," stated Hotchkiss. "I'm excited to see what the team can do with more training and rest come MPSF Conference and NCAA Championships."
Joseph Lastelic continued to feed the men's team energy, finishing first at a 4:24.58 in the 500 freestyle. Followed by teammates Jake Rollo and Ryan Levy, placing fourth (4:30.57) and sixth (4:36.37) respectively. Terry Yang also picked up some points for the men's team, finishing in 11th with a time of 4:34.97.
Lucca Martins led the Gaucho men in the 200 IM, placing third and touching with a 1:50.23. He was followed closely by teammates, Douglas Nogueira in fourth (1:51.26), Dan Marella in fifth (1:51.59), and Ethan Archer in sixth (1:52.47). In the B final, Alec Cullen finished in 10th with a 1:53.08 and Tony Moore touched at a 1:53.91 securing 14th place.
Senior Captain Tittle picked up another win for the men's team, finishing first with a time of 19.62. His morning swim time of 19.43 puts him right on the edge of being invited to the NCAA Championship. This swim also breaks Wade Allen's school record of 19.45, set back in 2014. Sprint squad teammates Nguyen and Brouwer followed in fourth (20.18) and sixth (20.25), respectively. In the B final Calvin Kirkpatrick picked up 11th (20.88) and Basham at 16th (21.11).
To start off day two of finals, Gaucho squad Griffin, Cullen, Tittle, and Nguyen touched in second (1:28.74) in a tight race against the UOP men in the 200 medley relay.
The men's team had a strong performance in the 400 IM, getting four swimmers in to the A final. Martins snagged another win for himself touching first with the time of 3:51.61, followed closely by Nogueira in second with a 3:54.68. Marella secured fourth place (3:58.00) and Rollo picked up seventh (4:02.71). Zach Shenkins and Chris Havton scored points placing 14th (4:09.78) and 15th (4:13.14), respectively.
Brouwer led the men's in the 100 butterfly, placing second with a time of 47.97. Teammates Griffin and Tim Lee scored points in the B final, placing 10th (49.40) and 13th (50.19), respectively.
The Gaucho men showed off their mid-distance prowess, with Hotchkiss winning the men's 200 freestyle (1:34.93), followed by Lastelic touching second with a time of 1:36.85. Levy trailed closely in fourth place touching at a 1:39.53 and Nguyen placed sixth with a 1:40.02. In the B heat, freshmen teammates Oscar Jameson and Yang picked up points placing 11th (1:40.58) and 13th (1:41.30), respectively.
The breaststroke squad had a tight race in the 100 breaststroke, with Moore leading the men at second with a time of 55.15. Followed closely by Marcello Quarante placing fifth (55.29) and Cullen placing sixth (55.49).
Griffin led the men's team in the 100 backstroke, placing second with a time of 48.22, followed by Kirkpatrick in seventh touching at a 49.88. Teammates Archer and Levy picked up 10th (50.04) and 13th (51.29) in the B heat, respectively.
The Gaucho men had a strong finish to night two of finals, with relay squad Brouwer, Nguyen, Lastelic, and Hotchkiss touching first in the 800 freestyle relay (6:29.56).
The men's distance squad got the ball rolling for the last night of racing at the UNLV Invite. Hotchkiss won the 1650 freestyle touching at a time of 15:03.30, followed by Lastelic in third (15:46.58). Teammates Rollo and Marella placed 7th (16:05.67) and 8th (16:06.30), respectively.
Nogueira started off strong in the final night by picking up a win for himself in the 100 IM (49.57). Trailing closely in third, Griffin touched at a 50.28. Teammates Moore and Martins secured more points in the B final, placing 9th (51.61) and 10th (52.17), respectively.
Nogueira, with a quick turnaround in the impressive back-to-back double, placed second in the 200 backstroke with a time of 1:46.40. Kirkpatrick secured fifth place, dipping under the 1:50 barrier with a 1:49.55. In the B final, Archer picked up 9th place (1:50.06), followed by Griffin in 10th (1:51.80), and Yang in 14th (1:53.24).
The Gacuho men took care of business in the morning heats of the 100 freestyle, getting five swimmers up in the A final. In the final Tittle placed first (43.58), picking up another win for himself, followed closely by Brouwer in second place (43.98). Nguyen touched at fifth (44.64), followed by Lastelic in seventh (44.64), and Hotchkiss in eighth (46.96). In the B final, Levy finished in 11th (45.22), Basham in 12th (45.42), and Lee in 15th (45.64).
Cullen led the Gaucho men in the 200 breaststroke, taking second place and touching at a time of 1:59.10. Moore took fifth place (2:03.11), followed by Quarante in seventh (2:03.39), and Marella in eighth (2:03.77). Kmak won the B final, placing 9th and touching at a 2:02.79, followed by Ivan Graham placing 15th (2:06.66).
In his second event of the night, Martins touched second (1:46.48) in a close race against Cal Poly's David Hudson. Shenkin took seventh place touching at a 1:52.44 and Havton won the B final at 9th place (1:51.23).
To wrap up the meet, the Gaucho men picked up another relay event win in the 400 freestyle relay. Brouwer, Nguyen, Levy, and Tittle touched at first place with a time of 2:53.89.
The UCSB men's team now prepares for finals week before they start winter training camp. With big goals for MPSF Conference Championships, they plan on using their experience from the UNLV Invite to build off the great start to their season. The UCSB swim team will come back to Las Vegas for their next competition, as they have a dual meet against UNLV and Denver on Jan. 18th and 19th.