GREENSBORO, N.C.-- Denison continued to build upon its lead at the NCAA Division III Swimming & Diving Championships at the Greensboro Aquatic Center. Through 14 of 20 events, the Big Red hold a 79.5 lead over second place Kenyon College. Denison has totaled 426.5 points. Kenyon has 347 and Emory is third with 303.5.
The 800 freestyle relay has been the most historically successful event in Denison men's swimming history with 10 national championships to their credit entering the night. Add another title to the list after Drake Horton, Bebe Wang, Eric Gerlach and Ryan Stevenson held off Emory for the national championship in 6:30.57. This is the fourth-straight 800 free relay title for the Big Red and the common thread of those titles has been Stevenson. The senior has been on all four of the relays, anchoring the last three. Stevenson closed out the race with a 25.81 final 50 yards to lock up the win.
The Big Red had a great morning in the 200 fly and that resulted in a 48-point final as Mitch Williams paced Denison with a national runner-up finish in 1:45.62. Williams went head-to-head with WashU's Brandon Lum who built a lead over the first 100. Williams closed strong with a 54.28 split but was out-touched by .14 by Lum.
Checking in third was DU first-year Noah Houskeeper in 1:47.35. Another Denison rookie, Richie Kurlich, was eighth in 1:48.49, and John Stauffer posted a 13th place finish with a time of 1:49.38. DU not only scored 48 points in the event they also outscored second-place Kenyon, 48-9.
Liam Picozzi continued Denison's trend of successful rookie performances by touching seventh in the 100 backstroke. It was the first individual event All-American award for Picozzi who logged a time of 48.19 after a PR of 48.58 in prelims. Carson Clear followed with the seventh All-American performance of his career by placing 12th in 49.10.
In the 100 breaststroke, Tiernan Foster-Smith matched his third-place showing from a year ago by hitting the wall in 54.30. This is the ninth All-American certificate for Foster-Smith.
Denison will close out the 2019 NCAA Division III Championship on Saturday with finals in the 1,650 free, 100 free, 200 back, 200 breast, and the 400 free relay.