AUSTIN, Texas – The Duke men’s swimming and diving team wrapped up the 2018-19 campaign Saturday at the Lee and Joe Jamail Texas Swimming Center.
Two Blue Devils capped their collegiate careers during Saturday’s preliminaries, as senior Max St. George improved upon his pre-meet seeding to place 34th in the 200-yard backstroke (1:43.93) and classmate Evan Moretti also finished 34th in platform diving with 271.55 points. Moretti was joined in the platform preliminaries by junior Nathaniel Hernandez, who earned a total award of 220.70 to come in 42nd.
Junior Miles Williams represented the Blue Devils in the 100 freestyle preliminaries, tapping the wall at 42.45 to tie for 26th in the field.
"This is always, for all our athletes, one of the goals they hope to achieve during their collegiate career," said head coach Dan Colella. "Evan's been here each year so it was great for him to be able to come and once again be an All-American. For Max, this was his first trip to the national championship and we're incredibly proud of what they've contributed to the team over the years. It was a great way to finish their careers. We thank them for all their hard work and everything they've put into the program."
Hernandez and Moretti both claimed All-America honors in Thursday’s one-meter diving competition. A native of Southlake, Texas, Hernandez joined former Blue Devil national champion Nick McCrory (2010, 2011, 2013, 2014) and John C. Connor (1949, 1950) as the program’s first team All-Americans in men’s diving with an eighth-place finish. Moretti was 11th in the event for the third honorable mention All-America accolade of his career.
Behind the performances of Hernandez and Moretti, the Blue Devils scored 17 points to tie for 29th at the NCAA Men’s Swimming and Diving Championships. The top-30 finish marked the highest for the Duke men since 2014.
The Blue Devil women also made history at last week's championship, finishing 23rd behind three individual and three relay All-American swims. The 23rd-place finish marked the second highest in women’s program history and the highest since 2011.
"We're so proud of what the men and women have accomplished this year," Colella said. "Right from the start, we had a really great feeling about this year. We could just sense that the team's energy and culture was such that we thought we could do some really big things this season. It's always great when you put this kind of work into it and get the results we did this year. It's a continuation of what we've been working toward the last several years. Our goal is to build on what we started this year, in terms of finishing top-30 for the men and top-25 for the women. Overall, we've had so many accomplishments that have been a result of a total team effort."