By Robert McKinney, Assistant Athletics Director, Communications
FEDERAL WAY, Wash. -- Julius Wilhelmi (Sr., Roseville, CA/Woodcreek HS) placed seventh in the 100-yard freestyle and Nicholas Moore took seventh in the 1,650-yard freestyle for the Willamette University mens' swimming team, as the 2024 Northwest Conference Swimming Championships concluded on Sunday, Feb. 11. Action at the Weyerhaeuser King County Aquatic Center on Sunday featured five individual events and ended with the 400-yard freestyle relay.
Wilhelmi's time for seventh place in the 100 freestyle championship final was 46.94 seconds, which ranks seventh on the Bearcats' all-time list. He also holds second, third, and sixth among WU's top eight times in the 100 freestyle.
On Sunday, Wilhelmi finished 0.11 out of fifth place and held a slim 0.01 advantage over Keenan Tiddle from Whitman College, who placed eighth in 46.95 seconds. Zachary Washburn of Whitworth University won the 100-yard freestyle in an NCAA "B" qualifying time of 44.17 seconds.
In the 1,650-yard freestyle, Moore registered a time of 16:59.87 to place fifth in the final heat and claim seventh place overall. He lowered his seed time by 42.62 seconds. The 1,650-yard freestyle featured several heats, with the overall standings based on each swimmer's time in their heat.
Moore also swam in the consolation final of the 200-yard backstroke and earned a time of 2:08.03. He placed fourth in the consolation final and was 12th overall. Also competing for Willamette in the consolation race of the 200 backstroke was Ash Kiel (So., Carson City, NV/Carson City HS), who was timed at 2:11.24. Kiel placed sixth in the consolation final and was 14th overall.
Kevin Olmedo (So., La Canada, CA/St. Francis HS) of Willamette was third in the consolation final of the 100-yard freestyle and placed 11th in the final standings with a personal-best time of 47.80 seconds. He entered the finals seeded 16th, but moved up five positions. His previous top time was 48.52 during Sunday's prelims.
Also for Willamette on Sunday, Logan Copeland (Sr., Sparks, NV/Spanish Springs HS) attained fourth place in the consolation final of the 200-yard breaststroke in 2:14.02, as he placed 12th overall.
The Bearcats placed fifth in the 400-yard freestyle relay with a time of 3:10.45. The Bearcats won the first heat, but just missed Whitman College's time of 3:10.41 in the second heat, as the Blues earned fourth place. During Willamette's heat, the Bearcats held off Lewis & Clark College, which finished in 3:11.10 to take second in the heat and sixth in the event. Swimming on the relay for Willamette were Wilhelmi, Cole Lindberg (Jr., Moses Lake, WA/Moses Lake Christian Academy), Olmedo, and Copeland.
Whitworth won the men's team championship with a score of 770.5. Whitman placed second with a score of 525.5, while the University of Puget Sound was third at 497.50. Linfield University was fourth at 366, Willamette was fifth at 282, Lewis & Clark placed sixth at 279, Pacific Lutheran University held seventh place at 226, George Fox University was eighth at 225.5, and Pacific University was ninth with 94 points.
Zachary Washburn from Whitworth was named the NWC Men's Swimmer of the Year. Kai Hayashida of Whitworth received NWC Men's Rookie of the Year honors. Whitworth Head Coach Steve Schadt was voted NWC Men's Swimming Coach of the Year.