Keriazes, Kuhn win titles on Day 3 to lead Men's Swimming & Diving to 12th consecutive OAC Championships crown

Keriazes, Kuhn win titles on Day 3 to lead Men's Swimming & Diving to 12th consecutive OAC Championships crown

By Tim Glon

OAC Championships Site | ONU Men's OAC Placers |

AKRON — Sophomore Trevor Keriazes won the 200 breast in record-setting fashion to lead the Ohio Northern men's swimming & diving team to its 12th consecutive Ohio Athletic Conference Swimming and Diving Championships title on Saturday evening at the University of Akron's Ocasek Natatorium.

The Polar Bears scored 843 points in the 20 events and won the team title by an 186-point margin.

Mount Union was second with 657 points, John Carroll was third with 559 points and Wilmington was fourth with 479 points.

Ohio Northern is now a perfect 12-for-12 at the OAC Championships under 12th-year head coach Peggy Ewald, winning the team title in each of her 12 seasons.

Keriazes won the 200 breast in 2:04.47, shattering the OAC record and tying the school record set in 2013 by his brother, Drew.

He was named the OAC Men's Swimmer of the Year, winning titles in the 100 and 200 breast and the 200 I.M. and surpassing NCAA "B" Cuts in both of the breast stroke events.

Sophomore Braden Kuhn completed the sweep of the diving events by winning the 3-meter diving competition with 391.45 points.

He was named the OAC Diver of the Year after winning the 1-meter event on Friday.

Junior Eric Chen and senior Mitchell Murphy earned All-Conference honors in the 100 free.

Chen was second in a school record :46.18 and Murphy was third in :46.80.

Junior John Raker and freshman Pete He finished 2nd and 3rd, respectively, in the 200 breast to earn All-Conference accolades.

Raker finished in 1:53.72 and He touched in 1:54.89.

The Polar Bears slammed the door on their OAC Championships title by winning the final race of the night in record-setting fashion.

Chen, Murphy, He and junior Logan Pfeifer won the 400 free relay by more than 5.5 seconds, touching in an OAC and ONU record and NCAA "B" Cut 3:04.23.

"This has been a great test for what it will take to continue as a contender for the championship titles," Ewald said. "As the number of qualifying times for NCAA championships rises in the conference the landscape to get there continues to be sharper. We swam a great meet. The distribution of places is very tight, especially for the women's side, a completely different arena in the past 2 years.

"We had a great meet and capitalized on our strengths. As a coach that's all we can ask. It takes resilience to make the most of such a long season. I feel we took stock of our weaknesses for future development and utilized our strength zones to maximize our position. We are loosing top performers in Allison Lohnes, Mitch Murphy, Zach Martin and Sean O'Neill but with only four seniors this year, a rarity for us, it's promising for the future teams back next year.

"I am very proud of how this men's team came together these past few weeks to uphold the tradition and bring home the 12 consecutive wins. I'm equally proud of how the women rallied to hold on with the smallest team in years. This was a meet of quality performance for us."

Ewald and her assistant coaches Helaina Sacco, Angie Voll and Jess DiFrancisco were named the OAC Men's Coaching Staff of the Year. It marks the seventh time Ewald has earned the honor.

The top three finishers in individual races and the two two relay teams earn All-OAC honors.

The Polar Bears will now wait to see if any of the NCAA "B" Cuts times are good enough to earn bids to the NCAA III Championships March 16-19 in Greensboro, N.C.

Team Standings

1. Ohio Northern 843, 2. Mount Union 657, 3. John Carroll 559, 4. Wilmington 479, 5. Baldwin Wallace 298, 6. Transylvania (Ky.) 209, 7. Manchester (Ind.) 125.