Dienstag surpasses NCAA 'B' cut in 1,650 freestyle on final day of UAAs

Sam Dienstag '24 (Photo by Sportspix.com / Jan Volk)
Sam Dienstag '24 (Photo by Sportspix.com / Jan Volk)

ATLANTA, Ga. -- The Brandeis University swimming and diving teams qualified seven swimmers for the evening session and had one of the best performances in school history in the mile on the final day of action at the 2022 UAA Swimming and Diving Championships at Emory University. 

The highlight of the meet came in the evening session on the men's side. Sophomore Sam Dienstag (Wilmette, Ill. / New Trier) broke his own school record in the 1650-yard freestyle with a time of 15:34.66, lowering the previous time by 10.16 seconds.  The first 1000 of the race also broke his school record in the 1000-yard freestyle by 7.93 seconds. With his sixth-place finish, Dienstag reached the NCAA 'B' cut at a time that was selected to the last NCAA Division III Swimming and Diving Championships in 2019. 

Senior Brendon Lu (Basking Ridge, N.J./Ridge) finished 17th, winning the C final of the 200-yard breaststroke with a time of 2:03.88, breaking the previous school record by 0.91 seconds. First-year Tal Spector (Phoenix, Ariz. / Herberger Young Scholars Academy), who reached his first career final, finished 24th in the 200-yard butterfly with a time of 1:55.52, 0.58 seconds faster than his morning swim. Junior James Barno (Ballston Spa, N.Y. / Ballston Spa) finished 24th in the 200-yard backstroke with a time of 1:58.59. 

The 400-yard freestyle relay team of Dienstag, senior Benton Ferebee (Germantown, Tenn. / Memphis University School), Barno, and Lu placed 8th with a time of 3:12.25

On the women's side, junior Bailey Gold (Berkeley Heights, N.J. / Governor Livingston) improved from her 11th-place prelim finish to come in 10th in the B final of the 200-yard butterfly with a time of 2:06.89, 2.09 seconds faster than her morning swim. The 10th-place finish was the Brandeis women's highest finish of the meet. In the 200-yard backstroke, sophomores Monical Iizuka (Chatham, N.J. / Chatham) and Maya Haubrich (Grayslake, Ill. / Grayslake) finished 20th and 22nd, respectively, after finishing in the same spots in prelims. Haubrich finished with a time of 2:09.66, 0.33 seconds faster than the morning, while Iizuka finished with a school-record time of 2:07.58, breaking the previous time by 0.47 seconds. 

Junior Ema Rennie (Dublin, Ohio / Dublin Scioto), who was 20th in the morning with a school record in the 100-yard freestyle with a time of 53.20, shaved another hundredth of a second off the mark with a time of 53.19, finishing 22nd. 

The 400 freestyle relay team of Rennie, first-year Chloe Gonzalez (Miami Beach, Fla. / Miami Beach Senior), Iizuka, and Gold finished 8th with a time of 3:39.87.

In the team standings, both teams finished in 8th place. The men finished with 417 points, 76 points behind 7th place Rochester, while the women finished with 414.5 points, 70 points behind Rochester. The women's total was their highest score at the UAA championships since the 2010 season.