INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – The 2017 NCAA Men’s Swimming and Diving Championships reached their conclusion Saturday at IU Natatorium with freshman diver Nathaniel Hernandez making his NCAA debut.
Hernandez represented Duke in the platform competition after securing his trip to NCAAs with an impressive performance in the same event at the NCAA Zone B Diving Championships.
Saturday’s preliminaries saw Hernandez earn 70.50 points in the second round on a forward 3 ½ somersault and 62.40 points in the third round on an inward 3 ½ somersault. The Southlake, Texas native would go on to finish with a total score of 260.55 points, good for 36th in the field.
Hernandez was joined in Indianapolis this week by fellow Blue Devil diver Evan Moretti, who turned in a pair of top-25 finishes in the one-meter and three-meter springboard diving events.
Duke’s NCAA contingent also featured senior swimmers Peter Kropp and Dylan Payne, who both competed Friday in the 100-yard breaststroke. Payne was 28th in the event preliminaries while Kropp earned a spot in the event championship final. He went on to take seventh in the ‘A’ final, securing the first All-American accolades of his career. Kropp joined an elite group at Duke, becoming the eighth individual All-American in men’s program history.
Behind Kropp’s performance, the Blue Devil men recorded 12 points to place 32nd in the final team standings, up seven spots from the 2016 NCAA meet. The Duke men were represented at NCAAs for the eighth consecutive season, while the program featured a pair of All-Americans in Kropp and junior diver MaryEllen Targonski, who garnered honorable mention honors last week at the women’s championship.