Men’s swimming places 2nd at Marcussen Invite


Junior Conner Clements backstrokes his way to a first place finish. (Met Lane photo)

Meg Lane/Editor-in-Chief

The men’s swim team definitely turned heads this weekend, placing second at the 32nd annual Marcussen Invite on Saturday.

The invite is named in honor of the men’s and women’s head swim coach, Dick Marcussen, who has been coaching for 42 years at Cedar Falls.

This year’s invitational has provided the team with many obstacles, including a small team and facing rivals like West Des Moines Dowling and Muscatine.

“Big invitationals like this are a challenge this year due to our small numbers, but we are working hard to step up in all individuals places,” assistant head Coach Joe Brown said.

And step up they did; junior Conner Clements won the 100-yard backstroke with a four second lead on West Des Moines Dowling’s Ruzicka David. Clements, along with junior Jake Sund and Waverly seniors Brady and Nick Stern, finished first in the 200 medley relay. Sund also helped the Tigers fight off competitors by finishing a half second ahead of Muscatine’s Michael Sovers in the 100-yard breaststroke.

Other returning letterwinners like sophomore Gabe Langner placed third in the 200-yard freestyle, bringing the Tigers to a second place finish, just 66 points behind Dowling. Cedar Falls scored a total of 441.33 points, a huge success for a such a small team.

Marcussen credits the team’s success to their preparation.

“We train hard mentally and physically. You have to have the right mind set to be able to be mentally (and) physically tough. That’s why we consistently practice and try to build off what we’ve done every year. The boys have made their goals clear, and they know exactly where they want to be as a team and individually,” Marcussen said.

So far the team has plans to have the best underwaters at State, place in the top five at State and build team unity.

“They want to be a complete team in every aspect, which includes explosive starts and turns, basically being fundamentally strong. We would like to be more efficient swimmers in the water. Wasting no energy and capitializing on other teams’ bad habits,” Brown said.

The next men’s swim meet will be held at home at Holmes Junior High at 6 p.m. against Cedar Rapids Kennedy on Tuesday, Dec. 13.

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