ST. MARY'S CITY, Md. - Sophomore Brian Bennett (Colorado Springs, Colo.) wasted little time making a splash at the 2010 Capital Athletic Conference men's swimming championships hosted by St. Mary's (Md.) College on Friday as he broke the Gallaudet University record in the 500-yard freestyle.
In the second men's event of the day, Bennett finished seventh overall in the 500-yard freestyle with a time of 4:57.19. The time gives Bennett his second school record this season as he supplanted Raymond Clark who held the previous best time of 4:58.72 since 2005. Bennett has wiped Clark's name from two school records. Clark still holds six GU records. Bennett hopes to add his name to the GU record book a few more times this weekend. Bennett secured 12 team points for the Bison who currently sit in sixth place out of seven teams at the championships after one day of competition.
Due to the Blizzard of 2010 the Friday morning preliminaries were wiped out to allow the six traveling teams more time to travel safely to St. Mary's City, Md., for the three-day championships. The day began at 4 p.m. with timed finals.
Gallaudet racked up 26 points apiece in the two different relays on Friday. GU has 64 points and trails fifth-place Salisbury University by 21 points and is six points ahead of seventh-place Hood College. Nine-time defending CAC champion University of Mary Washington is in first with 263 points as the Eagles won four of the five events.
Bennett along with fellow sophomores Grady Gallagher (Las Vegas, Nev.) and Zsolt Plaszko (Budapest, Hungary) and freshman Dan Burton (Waukesha, Wis.) started the championships in the 200-yard freestyle relay and finished with a time of 1:36.52, a second and a half in front of Hood.
GU only had one swimmer in the 200-yard individual medley (IM) as sophomore Sean Ryant (Cleveland, Ohio) placed 21st (2:49.85). A swimmer needs to finish in the top 16 to earn team points. All relays earn points for teams that finish.
Five Bison dove in on the fourth event, the 50-yard freestyle as Burton (24.46 seconds) and Plaszko (24.59 seconds) finished 21st and 22nd overall, respectively. Right behind them in 25th, 26th and 27th place were juniors Ben Taylor (Indianapolis, Ind.) and Kris Lauderbaugh (Painesville, Ohio) and sophomore Kyle Sexton (Peoria, Ill.).
The fifth and final men's event on Day 1 was the 400-yard medley relay which saw Mary Washington do something it doesn't do much, disqualify. The Eagles left early between the second and third leg which denied them a clean sweep of the five events on the day and allowed York (Pa.) College to swoop in and take home first-place in the relay (3:37.50). The Bison were sixth with a time of 4:14.15. GU's team consisted of Burton, junior Daniel DiDonna (Parsippany, N.J.), Bennett and Sexton.
The second day of the championships will begin at 10 a.m. tomorrow with the preliminaries followed by the finals round at 6 p.m.
2010 CAC Swimming Championships