Justin Wolfe was crowned MAC champion in the 100 fly
March 4, 2011
By Dana Ingraham
CARBONDALE, Ill. - Southern Illinois maintained its stronghold on second place on the second night of competition at the Mid-American Conference Swimming and Diving Championships.
Buffalo continued to surge ahead, claiming the top spot for the second night in a row with 539 total points. SIU is still ahead of Eastern Michigan with 425 points to EMU's 399.
The night began with the 200 medley relay, when Cesar Perez, Seyi Fatayi-Williams, Justin Wolfe and Juan Arbelaez Osorio teamed up for a third-place finish for Southern with a time of 1:30.60. Buffalo and Eastern took the top two spots with NCAA B qualifying times.
In his first championship heat as a Saluki, Csaba Gercsak placed fifth overall in the 400 IM with a new personal-best time of 4:00.06. Perez followed up with an eighth place finish at 4:02.86.
Wolfe came up big for the Salukis in the 100 butterfly, taking home his first MAC crown and SIU's first outright title of the championships with an NCAA B qualifying time of 48.24. Tony Bousquet also scored in the top eight for SIU, finishing seventh overall.
Arbelaez Osorio and Fatayi-Williams tied for 13th place and Jake Lucheon took 16th.
Southern also produced top scorers in the 200 freestyle. Matt Parsons and Matt Kruse finished side-by-side in second and third, short of Buffalo's Matt Hogan who's time of 1:37.05 broke a pool record that has stood since 1988. With a new personal-best time of 1:39.49, Chris Jordan captured sixth place, with El Badrawi rounding out the heat in eighth.
The 100 backstroke was the last individual race of the night. EMU's Jacob Hanson set another new pool record at 48.29 for the conference title. Perez wrapped up fourth place at 49.80, and Kyle Riekena won the consolation final for ninth place and a new personal-best at 51.15.
Competition concluded with the 800 freestyle relay. Defending champion Southern Illinois jumped out to an early lead but Buffalo slowly clawed its way back into contention and eventually edged the Salukis for the crown, setting a new MAC championship record at 6:37.21. Southern's team of Parsons, Badrawi, Jordan and Kruse touched in at 6:38.24, an NCAA consideration time.
Conference championship action will wrap up Saturday, with preliminaries in the 200 back, 100 free, 200 breast and 200 fly starting at noon CT. Timed final heats for the 1650 free are scheduled to start at 5 p.m., with the complete finals session following immediately after at 7 p.m.
Team Scores after Day Two
1. Buffalo - 539
2. Southern Illinois - 425
3. Eastern Michigan - 399
4. Miami - 314
5. Missouri State - 265
6. Ball State - 173
7. Evansville - 109