The Observer is a Student-run, daily print & online newspaper serving Notre Dame & Saint Mary's. Learn more about us.



Men’s Swimming and Diving: Senior leadership is strong

Joseph Monardo | Wednesday, February 2, 2011

As senior Eric Lex approaches the end of his diving career at Notre Dame, he carries with him the newly-earned title of school record holder. In his final meet in Rolf’s Aquatic Center, Lex recorded a score of 405.5 from the 3-meter board, surpassing 400 points for the first time in Notre Dame history as he put his name in the record books.

“I have definitely been eyeing [the record],” Lex said. “Michael Bulfin, the previous record holder, is the greatest diver in Notre Dame history and being able to join him on the record board is something that is very special to me.”

Lex is a crucial point-scorer for an Irish team that has only the Big East tournament lying ahead of it. Coming off of a strong performance in the Shamrock Invitational, the Irish (6-4) seem to be peaking at precisely the right time.

“The season has been building momentum as we’ve been going,” Lex said. “The momentum seems to be building right up to the Big East Tournament as it should be.”

At least one of the reasons that Notre Dame is in such a favorable position is the leadership of its seniors. Along with fellow senior divers Nathan Geary and Wes Villaflor, Lex said he appreciates his leadership role with the team.

“There are three of us seniors on the diving team, and I think we all play a big part in leading the team and especially the other divers,” Lex said.

That leadership will be helpful in the Big East tournament, especially considering Lex’s familiarity and success with the event. As a freshman, Lex earned all-conference recognition after his first appearance in the Big East tournament in which he finished third on the 1-meter board. With the added benefit of strong performances in both his sophomore and junior year, Lex appears to be primed for an impressive performance in this year’s conference tournament.

“A reasonable goal would be to dive as well as I can and hopefully end up winning the Big East,” he said.

Lex’s contribution will be important as the Irish try to take the conference title from Louisville as his career winds to a close. Lex, who already has a job lined up after graduation, has only a few weeks left as a collegiate diver.

“It is kind of bittersweet,” he said. “I have been diving since I was nine years old, and it is definitely not something that I want to give up. But I think that it is a point in my life that I need to move on to other things.”