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Men’s Swimming: Stoner continues season at U.S. Open

Chris Khorey | Thursday, April 20, 2006

Although the men’s swimming varsity season ended March 24, Sam Stoner is still going strong.

The Notre Dame sophomore is diving at the U.S. Open meet in Indianapolis this weekend.

Stoner finished 17th in the Open’s pre-qualifying round Tuesday, moving on to the preliminary round today by the skin of his teeth. He was the lowest finisher that still advanced.

24 divers will compete in the preliminary round, but seven of them were given byes through the pre-qualifying round for their performance during the regular varsity season.

“The people that are really good at diving and have done well in national meets get to skip to the prelims,” Stoner said. “Some of the people that are going to be there tomorrow have won national meets.”

Stoner said Irish coach Tim Welsh encouraged him to compete in Indianapolis for the experience of facing a large field.

“It was one of the biggest fields as far as the number of guys diving in it that I’ve been in this year,” the sophomore said.

Although Stoner was the lowest advancing diver Tuesday, he said he likes his chances going into the preliminaries today.

“The thing with diving is that people can do better or worse on any given day,” Stoner said. “If I dive my best I have a decent chance.”

The Open prelims are today. The quarterfinals and finals will both take place Saturday in Indianapolis.