No. 4 Men’s Swimming & Diving Looks to Bounce Back in LSU

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BATON ROUGE, La. – The No. 4 Texas A&M men’s swimming & diving team travels to LSU for its second SEC dual meet of the season in the LSU Natatorium on Saturday, Jan. 18 at 11 a.m.

“We’re looking forward to getting back into the win column,” said men’s head coach Jay Holmes. “We have a great history with [LSU] between our swimming & diving programs. We’re looking forward to get back at ‘em.”

Texas A&M approaches its dual meet with LSU after its dual-meet record fell to 5-3 from its loss to No. 11 Georgia. The Maroon & White claimed dual-meet victories over No. 5 Ohio State, Boston University, Harvard, Incarnate Word and Trinity, with its other losses coming from No. 2 Texas and Duke. The bulk of the Maroon & White’s standout times came from the Art Adamson Invite where it managed to set eight new school records and won by a margin of 647 points over second-place USC. Nine different Aggies own times ranked among the top-30 times in the nation, in addition to Texas A&M notching a top-five time in all five relay events. As a result, the Maroon & White boast its ranking at the No. 4 spot by the College Swimming & Diving Coaches Association of America, their highest ranking since 2001.

Aggies in the Top 30

Athlete - Event - Time - Rank

Kaloyan Bratanov - 200 IM - 1:45.19 - 24th

Shaine Casas -100 Back - :44.48 - 1st

Shaine Casas - 200 IM - 1:40.16 - 1st

Shaine Casas - 200 Back - 1:37.35 - 2nd

Shaine Casas - 50 Back (Relay Leadoff) - :21.07 - 2nd

Shaine Casas - 100 Fly - :45.26 - 3rd

Shaine Casas - 200 Free (Relay Leadoff) - 1:33.67 - 9th

Shaine Casas - 50 Free (Relay Leadoff) - :19.54 - 20th

Shaine Casas - 100 Free (Relay Leadoff) - :42.94 - 25th

Adam Koster - 100 Free - :42.26 - 5th

Adam Koster - 50 Free - :19.49 - 16th

Tanner Olson - 100 Breast - :52.68 - 15th

Andres Puente - 200 Breast - 1:52.48 - 6th

Andres Puente - 100 Breast - :52.49 - 12th

Andres Puente - 400 IM - 3:46.75 - 20th

Luke Stuart - 1650 Free - 15:06.58 - 28th

Mark Theall - 500 Free - 4:12.19 - 3rd

Mark Theall - 200 Free - 1:32.96 - 5th

Mark Theall - 1650 Free - 15:08.54 - 30th

Mike Thibert - 50 Back (Relay Leadoff) - :21.91 - 28th

Benjamin Walker - 200 Breast - 1:53.33 - 10th

On the Diving Boards

Texas A&M’s diving duo, Kurtis Mathews and Victor Povzner, is coming off a one-two sweep of the men’s diving events in the Georgia dual meet. Mathews won big in both the 3-meter and the 1-meter, with scores of 447.53 and 398.85 respectively. His dominance on the springboards earned him his first SEC Men’s Diver of the Week award in his career, and his 447.53-scored performance is ranked sixth in the nation for six-dive scores. The junior team captain has claimed top-three finishes in nine out of the 10 events he’s competed in. Povzner placed second scoring 356.70 and 371.33 in the 1-meter and the 3-meter respectively. Povzner has collected two SEC Men’s Diver of the Week awards and has now placed among the top-three seven times out of the 10 events he’s competed in. Texas A&M’s freshman diver has won the 3-meter dive three out of the five times he’s competed in the event and holds the 13th-ranked score in the nation for the 3-meter for six dives with a score of 404.90 at the Harvard, Duke double-dual meet.

“I expect them to do pretty well,” said head diving coach Jay Lerew. “The boards are really good there. They’re ready to go. Both, Victor [Povzner] and Kurtis [Mathews] are diving really strong right now, coming off of Georgia. I think the result’s going to be about the same this weekend.”

Scouting LSU

LSU owns a 2-2 dual-meet record, claiming victories over SMU and Delta State with losses to Auburn and Missouri. Karl Luht owns the highest ranking time for LSU, spotted at No. 15 in the nation for the 100 back with a time of 46.09. Luht’s 100 back and 200 back set new pool records at the LSU Natatorium during LSU’s dual meet against Missouri. LSU’s sprinter, Mathew Klotz owns a time of 19.67 that ranks 32nd in the nation for the 50 free. LSU’s diving squad has already faced off against Texas A&M back in November at the Art Adamson Invitational. Povzner and Mathews had a one-two finish in the 3-meter to beat out LSU’s Emanuel Vazquez, who finished third in the event. Mathews won the 1-meter dive, while Dakota Hurbis of LSU placed fourth. Povzner followed in fifth place at 307.75, with Vazquez closely trialed in sixth at 307.40.

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