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Tuesday, Feb. 27, 2024
The Observer

Men's Swimming: Irish swim past Boilermakers

For the first time in six years, Notre Dame beat No. 18 Purdue on Friday, pushing its record to 3-0 and maintaining its undefeated start with a 156-144 win.

Purdue came led by junior Danny Tucker, whose three first-place races the weekend before fueled his squad. But even his continued success in South Bend was not enough to carry his team against the cooperation of their opponents.

"We were racing well, and even if we lost some points on a race, everyone in the next race did his part," junior Chris Johnson said. "We had it in our heads we could win."

The Irish found guidance in their own leader, junior All-American Frank Dyer. His two first-place finishes in the 200-yard freestyle (1:39.14) and 500-yard freestyle (4:33.73) motivated his teammates to gather wins and gather points.

"It was a great meet, very competitive," Johnson said. "We kept the momentum strong."

Dyer also earned a first-place finish with teammates junior Bertie Nel, sophomore Cameron Miller and senior Kevin Overholt in the 200-yard medley relay squad, which they completed in 1:30.16 to come in more than a second ahead of their Purdue competitors.

Despite taking only seven of the 16 events, efforts in each race allowed the Irish to leave with the win.

Outside Dyer's successes, sweeps of the top three places in two events propelled the Irish. In the 200-yard freestyle, senior John McGinley and junior Colin Babcock followed Dyer to take second and third in 1:41.22 and 1:41.24, respectively.

In the 100-yard breaststroke, sophomore Zachary Stephens led the way in 55.93, with Miller coming second in 56.23 and Johnson in 57.07.

Sophomore John Williamson's first place in the 200-yard butterfly in 1:49.71, Stephens' first in the 200-yard breaststroke in 2:02.14 and sophomore Nick Nemetz's first in the one-meter dive were the remaining top places for the Irish.

"We had been saying all week we could win if we went out and raced well," Johnson said. "We came out strong and did not let off."

The Irish have the week to enjoy the win before returning to competition. They continue next weekend in the Rolfs Aquatic Center, starting with Pittsburgh on Friday and concluding with Louisville on Saturday.


Contact Megan Finneran at