Blues picked to repeat conference title by conference coaches

Blues picked to repeat conference title by conference coaches

Rk.

Team (1st)

Pts.

’16-17 NWC Finish

’17 NCAA

1.

Whitman (4)

47

1st

49th

t2.

Pacific Lutheran (2)

42

2nd

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t2.

Whitworth (2)

42

3rd

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4.

Linfield

36

4th

35th

5.

Puget Sound

26

5th

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6.

Willamette

17

6th

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7.

Lewis & Clark

15

7th

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8.

Pacific (Ore.)

7

8th

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(Points awarded on an 8-6-5-4-3-2-1 basis. Coaches could not vote for their own teams.)

 

HILLSBORO, Ore. — The Whitman Blues were narrowly picked to repeat as the Northwest Conference men’s swimming champions, according to a poll of the eight NWC head coaches.

The Blues, 1-1 after the opening week of dual action, received four first place votes and 47 total points to top the coaches’ poll. Honorable mention All-American Clark Sun (Sr., San Francisco, Calif.) returns to lead the Blues into the 2017-18 season after finishing 14th in the 100-yard freestyle at the 2017 NCAA Division III Swimming & Diving Championships. Whitman was the 2016-17 Northwest Conference team champion.

Pacific Lutheran and Whitworth were both picked to finish second in 2017-18, both earning two first place votes and 42 total points in the coaches’ poll.

The Lutes sit 2-0 after the opening weekend of duals. Pacific Lutheran boasts the first NWC Men’s Swimming Student-Athlete of the Week this season in Dennis Liu (Sr., Renton, Wash.). Liu was the 2016-17 NWC Champion in the 100-yard breaststroke and runner-up in the 200-yard breaststroke.

Whitworth was 1-1 after week one of dual competition. The Pirates return Eben Schumann (Jr., Mukilteo, Wash.), who competed last season at the NCAA Division III Swimming & Diving Championships in the 100-yard freestyle. Schumann won the NWC 100-yard butterfly crown last season.

Linfield was picked fourth with 36 points and opened the 2017-18 season 1-1 after the first weekend. The Wildcats return the reigning NWC Freshman of the Year and NWC Swimmer of the Year in Noah Cutting (So., Salem, Ore.). Cutting won the NWC title in both the 200-yard individual medley and 200-yard butterfly, while also swimming on two NWC champion relay teams for Linfield.

Puget Sound was predicted to finish fifth with 26 points. The Loggers picked up a pair of wins in the opening weekend of the season, led by week two NWC Student-Athlete of the Week, Dylan Reimers (So., Rocklin, Calif.). Reimers won the conference title last season in the 500-yard freestyle and was part of the Loggers’ championship 800-yard freestyle relay team.

Willamette was sixth in the poll with 17 points. The Bearcats, 0-2 after week one, return Mark Yuvienco (Sr., San Jose, Calif.) to lead the squad in 2017-18. Yuvienco was a three-time All-NWC honoree last season including a First Team All-NWC spot in after finishing third in the 200-yard butterfly.

Lewis & Clark was slated to finish seventh with 15 points and sits 0-2 after the first week of the dual season. August Bergh (Jr., Los Gatos, Calif.) will look to lead the Pioneers after finishing third in the 500-yard freestyle last season to earn First Team All-NWC honors.

Pacific (Ore.) received seven points and was picked to finish eighth. Raymond Miller (Sr., Portland, Ore.) returns for the Boxers, 0-2 after the opening weekend, after setting multiple school records at last year’s conference championships with All-NWC swims in the 200-yard freestyle and 200-yard butterfly.

The Northwest Conference dual season continues this weekend, while the conference championships are set to begin on February 9th at the Weyerhaeuser King County Aquatic Center in Federal Way, Wash.