By Melissa Maykut
OXFORD, Ohio - Miami University's men's swimming team repeated the 150-150 tie it had two seasons ago against Cleveland State when the teams raced to another draw Saturday afternoon at the Corwin M. Nixon Aquatic Center. Key victories from freshman Chris Dieter, junior Michael Cavanaugh, and senior Anderson Whipp helped the RedHawks to a 150-150 tie, improving their season record to 3-1-1.
The RedHawks provided an early seven point lead Saturday afternoon when a team of four Miami swimmers raced to a first place finish in the 400-yard medley relay. Freshmen Sean Neri and Evan Bader, and junior Michael Cavanaugh kept up the momentum throughout the race, leaving the final stretch of the relay to sophomore Joe Baumgartner, who clinched the win for Miami with an overall time of 3:26.53
Freshman Chris Dieter and sophomore Andrew Kilkenny dominated the 200 freestyle, earning the two top times of the event. Dieter touched the wall a second before Kilkenny, finishing the race in 1:42.48. Kilkenny cruised to a second-place finish with a time of 1:43.45, a second faster than Cleveland State's Nathan Grant.
Neri earned a second-place finish in the 100 back, touching the wall in 52.92. Senior Anderson Whipp was unable to hold on in the 100 breaststroke, earning a second-place victory with a time of 48.05. Cavanaugh also earned himself a second-place finish in the 100 butterfly, hitting the wall in 1:53.81.
Overall, head coach Pete Lindsay said he was happy with his team's performance against Cleveland State, a strong team the RedHawks had trouble with last season when they fell to the Vikings 179-120.
"They fought for every point," Lindsay said. "They were getting the fifth places, the fourth places when they needed to. They had some strong finishes, and the key to winning was we had to win three or four events and we did that. They fought well as a team and covered each other's backs."
The RedHawks were able to hold a tight lead over the Vikings until the 50 free when CSU took a five-point lead over the RedHawks. Baumgartner finished just a second behind CSU's Berry Thompson in the event, finishing second with a time of 21.07.
Baumgartner fell to Thompson two events later in the 100 free, racing to a second-place time of 46.28.
The RedHawks were able to regain a 77-73 lead over the Vikings when senior divers Michael Grainger and Chris Hoppler dominated the three-meter diving event. Grainger dove to a first-place victory with a score of 336.60 and Hoppler finished second with a 321.30 score.
CSU stole back the lead in the 200 back, when CSU's Shillito thwarted Neri for a second time. Neri finished second behind Shillito with a time of 1:54.49.
Bader also had a heartbreaking race in the 200 breast where he finished second in a time of 2:07.49. Bader had fallen behind Cleveland State's Brian Ferro, but was able to catch up to him in the last leg of the race. Ferro narrowly hit the wall first, winning the race with a time of 2:07.49.
The RedHawks made a comeback in the 100 fly where Cavanaugh was neck and neck against Cleveland State's Alex Lewis. A close race from the very beginning, Cavanaugh sprinted to the wall in a time of 51.03, beating out Lewis who finished in 51.23.
Grainger and Hoppler did it again in the one-meter diving event, taking first and second and cutting down the Vikings' lead to 133-131. Granger earned his second victory of the day with a score of 321.75, while Hoppler finished second with a score of 279.15.
The final win for Miami came during the 200 IM when Whipp raced to the wall in a time of 1:56.58. Whipp had a comfortable advantage over CSU's Ferro, who finished the race in 1:57.21.
Whipp's victory in the 200 IM provided the RedHawks a 144-139 lead. However, the Vikings came back in the 400 free relay, earning 11 points from their first-place win. Miami earned six points from its second and third-place finishes, resulting in a 150-150 tie between the two teams.
The RedHawks will travel to Columbus, Ohio Friday, Nov. 9 to take on the Ohio State Buckeyes. The meet will begin at 5 p.m.