Swim teams win All-America honors in 800-yard freestyle relays at NCAAs

Teddy Pender, shown launching into his leg of the 400 medley relay on March 22, passed two teams swimming the anchor leg of the 800-yard freestyle relay at the NCAA Championships on March 23, 2018 in Indianapolis, earning his ninth career All-America honor. (d3photography.com)

INDIANAPOLIS -- The Bates men's swim team scored NCAA Championship points in a freestyle relay for the first time in program history on Friday, placing 14th in the 800 free relay, while the Bates women's team placed 11th in the 800 free relay.

The Bates men set the team record in the 800 free relay with the sixth-fastest time in Friday morning trials, finishing in 6:46.02 to guarantee at least a 14th-place finish overall. Junior Alex Bedard (Amherst, N.H.) led off, followed by sophomore Tanner Fuller (Wellington, Fla.), senior Jonathan Depew (Hudson, Ohio) and senior Teddy Pender (Muscat, Oman), who passed two swimmers on his anchor leg with a split time of 1:39.63. Bates finished 0.08 seconds ahead of 15th-place Rowan. The former team record in the event of 6:53.60 was set in February 2018 by Benjamin Nussbaum, Rory Collins, Christopher Lee and Fuller.

The Bates women's 800 free relay team of sophomore Janika Ho (Los Angeles, Calif.) senior Hope Logan (Boothbay Harbor, Maine), junior Lucy Faust (Piedmont, Calif.) and sophomore Monica Sears (San Anselmo, Calif.) was not one of the 16 seeded teams, but defied that with the third-fastest time (7:33.98) in morning trials (which leaves out the top eight seeded teams). Bates stayed in 11th place after Friday night's finals, making Honorable Mention All-Americans of the four participants.

Ho and Logan both claimed their fourth All-America honors of the meet; it is the seventh in Ho's career and the fifth for Logan. Sears claimed her fourth career All-America honor and Faust claimed her second.

On the men's side, Depew and Fuller both earned their second Honorable Mention All-America honors of the meet, and Depew now owns four such honors in his career. Bedard won his third All-America honor and Pender captured the ninth of his career and third in the meet. Pender became the most decorated male in Bates men's swimming and diving history by passing seven-time All-American diver Andrew Hastings '02 in Thursday's action.

Bates' only other event on the third of four days at the NCAA Division III Championships, taking place at the IUPUI Natatorium, was senior Riley Ewing (Bedford, N.H.) in the 100-yard backstroke. The team captain recorded the 17th fastest time out of 36 men in the 100-yard back, with his trial time of 49.73 seconds -- one place away from advancing to the consolation finals.

The Bates women's team sits in 12th place out of 47 scoring teams after three days, while the Bates men's team ranks 21st out of 49 teams.

On the final day of NCAA Championship action Saturday, Bates' competition will comprise Pender in the 100 free, first-year Caroline Apathy (Devon, Pa.) in the 100 free, Ewing in the 200 backstroke, Bedard in the 200 breast, Sears in the women's 1,650-yard freestyle and both the men's and women's teams in the 400 free relay.