The Michigan’s men’s swimming and diving team entered the Eastern Michigan Invitational in Ypsilanti atop the national rankings. The Wolverines earned that prominent spot after their win against last year’s national champion, Texas.
Although the Wolverines felt good about their placement in the rankings, they found their next meet to be more casual.
Facing Eastern Michigan, Kalamazoo, Wayne State, Calvin College, Allegheny and Case Western Reserve, Michigan put most of its swimmers in events other than their specialties.
Michigan did this so that its swimmers may gain more experience in multiple events, but the Wolverines ended up taking second place in the tournament behind Eastern Michigan. The Eagles destroyed the Wolverines, 1,157-815.
“The meet during the weekend didn’t surprise me,” Michigan coach Jon Urbanchek said. “Because the meet was an exhibition, we entered most of our swimmers as non-scoring and entered our bottom 10 swimmers so that they may gain more experience in the events.”
Despite the second-place finish, Michigan came out of the tournament with a better understanding of its swimmers.
The Wolverines earned eight event wins including a first-place finish in the 400- and 800-yard freestyle relays. They also finished first in the 400-yard medley relay.
Senior co-captain Jeff Hopwood contributed with his performances in both breaststroke events. Hopwood earned first place in both of the events with a time of 56.59 in the 100-yard breaststroke and 2:02.62 in the 200-yard breaststroke.
“I thought Jeff Hopwood did an excellent job,” Urbanchek said. “He was one of the few swimmers out there that had a good amount of experience in his event.”
Michigan also had a powerful performance from its distance swimmers. Junior Dan Ketchum claimed his third NCAA consideration time with a time of 1:37.75 in the 200-yard freestyle.
Freshmen Peter Vanderkaay swam an NCAA consideration time of 4:21.47 in the 500-yard freestyle.
The Wolverines had many first-rate performances during the exhibition, but the Eagles captured the victory by winning five major events.