Mark Chay swam hard to defeat Notre Dame. (Photo by Mark Philbrick/BYU Photo)
PROVO -- The BYU men's swimming and diving team defended its ground at the first official meet of the season, hosted by the Cougars. BYU, ranked 22nd, went neck and neck against No. 26 ranked Notre Dame through all 16 events.
"Today was a scary win," BYU men's coach Tim Powers said. "We swam well overall, but the mistake in the 100 yard backstroke made us nervous."
Mark Chay and John Malfatt swam in the wrong lanes in event four, costing the team 17 points and giving the Fighting Irish a 25-point lead.
The Cougars diving pulled through with two event wins, putting BYU one point behind Notre Dame in the 14th event, 131-130. Scott Randall came in first for both diving events amounting to a total of 18 points for BYU.
"Scott really came through for the team; it was a big deal," diving coach Keith Russell said.
With the score an even 140, BYU caught up to and tied Notre Dame in event 15, the 200-yard IM.
"We knew that today was going to be tight," Chay said. Chay swam hard and finished first in the event with 1:53.08.
The final event, 400-yard freestyle, won the match for the Cougars. Kenny Carpenter, Jeffrey Su, James Bekker and Chris Patience came in first at 3:05.24 with the Irish following at 3:06.37. The final score, 153-144, gave BYU a nine-point victory.
BYU has two weeks to prepare before going up against UNLV in Las Vegas on Nov. 13.
"We will review our swims today," Chay said, "and Monday we will get back in the water and train hard."