February 16, 2013

Closest finish in 17 years at Longnecker Invitational

GROVE CITY, Pa. -- The Grove City College men's swimming and diving team concluded competition at the three-day James E. Longnecker Invitational/Presidents' Athletic Conference Championships Saturday night by placing second in the nine-team field with 728 points. Westminster earned the team title with 741 points. The 13-point margin of victory is the second smallest in the 21-year history of the Invitational, surpassed only by Grove City's 919-911 win over Rowan in 1996.

Junior Dave Bossert (Colorado Springs, Colo./Pine Creek) captured the Invitational's Swimmer of the Year award after recording three individual victories during the meet. He opened Saturday night's session by winning the 1650 free in 16 minutes, 28.48 seconds.

Senior Eric Fairchild (Corry, Pa./Corry) won the 100 free in 45.85 seconds. That time provisionally qualifies Fairchild for the NCAA Championships.

Junior Louis Gabriele (Mahwah, N.J./Don Bosco) provisionally qualified for the NCAA Championships in the 200 breaststroke with a runner-up time of 2:05.99.

Fairchild, freshman Jordan Dehli (Moneta, Va./Staunton River), senior Ian Smyth (Troy, Pa./Troy) and junior C.P. Dehli (Moneta, Va./Staunton River) closed the meet by taking second overall in the 400 free relay with a conference-title time of 3:09.02.

Sophomore Ben Satre (Hockessin, Del./Homeschooled) earned third in the 200 butterfly in 1:57.89 while sophomore Richie Klimek (Oakdale, Pa./South Fayette) finished third in 3-meter diving with 370.10 points. Sophomore Karter Gagliardo (Gurnee, Ill./Warren Township) placed fourth on the 3-meter board with 295.60 points. Senior Adam Walker (Lexington, Ky./Homeschooled) finished fourth in the 200 breaststroke (2:09.39) and Smyth touched fifth in the 200 backstroke (1:59.04).

Grove City had won each of the last five Longnecker Invitational titles. Grove City's five-year streak began in 2008 when the Wolverines edged Westminster, 912-898.

Team Standings
1. Westminster College               741   2. Grove City College                728

3. Penn State Behrend                619   4. Washington & Jefferson College    422
5. Saint Vincent College             362   6. Univ of Pittsburgh at Bradford    181
7. Cabrini College                   168   8. Penn State Altoona                139
9. Bethany College                    34


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