400 Medley Relay Smashes School Record at NCAA Prelims
March 22, 2012
FEDERAL WAY, Wash. - The Penn State 400 medley relay opened the NCAA Men's Swimming & Diving Championships with a new school record (3:07.62) and is set for All-America honors for the first time ever in the event. Penn State's relay will head back to the Weyerhaeuser King County Aquatic Center at 10:00 p.m. ET for the finals. Barring a disqualification, the team will earn All-America honors.
Freshman Nate Savoy (Reading, Pa.) led off with a 46.68 backstroke leg, just .08 off his personal best. The Nittany Lions then had Mitch Scherer (Pottstown, Pa.) in the breast leg (52.47), Sean Grier (45.70) in the fly and Shane Austin (Kennett Square, Pa.) anchor the free leg. Penn State finished fifth out of 18 teams competing and was 1.50 seconds behind first-place Arizona and 0.92 behind Texas for second. PSU was the fastest Big Ten tean in the prelims (Michigan, seventh place, 3:08.26).
Earlier in the day, PSU's 200 free relay team finished 18th in a season-best time of 1:19.20. Austin led off with a season-best 19.80 with the fifth-fastest 50 free time in school history. Brian Alden (Lansdale, Pa.) and Grier held the middle legs, while Scott Marino (Scotch Plains, N.J.) anchored the squad.
Marino returned to the pool after a brief intermission in the 200 IM, leading Penn State in the event with a time of 1:45.53, good for 21st place. Matt Salig (Downingtown, Pa.) and Savoy made their NCAA debuts in the event with 1:46.02 (27th) and 1:48.08 (48th) swims, respectively. Austin followed up his impressive 200 freestyle relay lead-off leg with a 19.90 swim for 33rd place in the 50 freestyle event.