Swim & Dive finish ninth at ACC Championship

Freshman Deniz Ertan pictured in the pool during the ACC Championships. Ertan broke her own school record twice in the women’s 500 free and became the third women’s ACC Champion in Tech history. // Photo courtesy of GTAA

Tech swim and dive traveled to Greensboro, N.C. for the ACC Championships and emerged with two podium finishers. The Jackets came into the meet having won most of their dual meets and were looking to be competitive in a conference full of stars. The first day opened with Tech placing in the latter half of competition in the four events hosted that day: men’s 1M, women’s 3M, 200 medley relay and 800 free relay. Dive missed on scoring team points as sophomore Luke Dotson placed 25th in the 1M dives while senior Carmen Woodruff and junior Anna Bradescu placed 25th and 26th respectively in the 3M dives. 

However, Tech found points in both of the relay events as the men’s 200 medley finished 10th while the women came in at 11th. The 800 free brought the women an eighth place finish and the men with ninth to finish off the first day of competition. The Jacket men and women sat at 10th and 11th at the end of the first day and looked to climb higher the next day. 

The second day brought some big wins for Tech as the Jackets competed in the 500 free, 200 individual medley (IM), 50 free, women’s 1M and 200 free relay. The day began well as breakout freshman Deniz Ertan became an ACC Champion in the women’s 500 free, breaking her own school record twice: once in the preliminaries and then again by two seconds in the finals. She is just the third women’s ACC Champion in Tech history and achieved so as a freshman. The podium placements continued as junior Batur Ünlü took home the silver medal in the men’s 500 free. Ünlü is the first All-ACC honoree for Tech since 2005 and also broke his own personal record at the meet. In the 200 IM, junior Rei Kuramoto broke the school record with a time of 1:59.36, advancing herself to the final. 

Sophomore Berke Saka and freshman Nils Bognar also placed first and third in the men’s 200 IM B final while freshman Anna Hadjiloizou was the only swimmer to advance to the finals of the 50 free where she finished with a 22.78 time in the C final. Both of Tech’s divers scored on the second day as Bradescu and Woodruff placed 12th and 24th in the women’s 1M. The day finished with the Tech men at ninth and the women at 11th. The third day saw Tech compete in the 400 IM, 100 Fly, 200 Free and Men’s 3M Event. Ünlü once took home another silver medal; this time in the 200 free and became the first Tech swimmer since 2009 to be All-ACC in the event. The day was not as strong team wise for Tech, but six Jackets qualified for finals events and freshman Elijah Klier scored points for the Jackets with his 19th place finish in the men’s 3M diving. 

The day closed with the men holding steady at ninth and the women advancing up to tenth. The fourth day was the best team effort all meet with 14 Jackets qualifying for finals in their events which were the 200 Fly, 100 Back, 100 Breast and Women’s Platform. 

The outstanding performance of the day came from Saka who placed fourth overall in the men’s 100 back with a time of 45.70. Bradescu also delivered the best diving performance of the weekend for the Jackets with a fourth place finish in the women’s platform event, scoring 295.50. Tech proceeded to record the second best time in school history in the women’s 400 medley at 3:37.77. The day capped with the men holding their ninth place spot and the women leaping up to ninth. The fifth and final day of competition saw more podium finishes for the Jackets. Ertan finished at the top of the podium in the women’s 1650 free, making her the first female multi-champion in Tech history. Sophomore Mert Kilavuz took silver in the men’s 1650 free, placing for the second year in a row. 

The meet rounded out with the Jackets having 35 athletes qualify for finals in their respective events while both teams rounded out at ninth place. The Jackets will be heading to the NCAA Championship in Knoxville, Tenn. at the beginning of March.