Pirates selected as favorite in NWC Men's Swimming Preseason Poll

Pirates selected as favorite in NWC Men's Swimming Preseason Poll





2017-18 NWC Finish



64 (8)




52 (1)







Pacific Lutheran




Puget Sound




Lewis & Clark








George Fox




Pacific (Ore.)



(Points awarded on an 8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1 basis. Coaches could not vote for their own teams. Numbers in parentheses indicate number of first-place votes)


HILLSBORO, Ore. – The Whitworth men's swimming team is projected to capture the conference title in the 2018-19 season, as voted on by conference coaches. The Pirates received 64 points and eight first-place votes.

The Pirates finished the 2017-18 regular season undefeated in-conference with a perfect 7-0 slate. At the 2018 NWC Championships, the team claimed their 15th title in 17 years with a team score of 665.5. The team was led by Patrick Wilber (Oceanside, Calif.) and Byron Rossmiller (Portland, Ore.), who both shattered the Northwest Conference record in the 200-yard backstroke with a 1:46.63 and 1:47.22, respectively. Wilber also took first in the 100-yard backstroke with a time of 48.88. Both earned an advancement to the NCAA Championships. Ryan Grady – the NWC Freshman of the Year, won the men's 200-yard breaststroke with a 2:04.59 – over three second ahead of runner-up. Pirates Head Coach Steve Schadt was named NWC Coach of the Year for the team's outstanding performance, finishing over 100 points ahead of second-place.

At the NCAA Championships, Rossmiller competed in the 200-yard backstroke, where he finished 32nd in the preliminaries with a time of 1:53.99. Wilber finished in 16th-place in the men's 200-yard backstroke with a 1:51.99 and 15th in the 100-yard backstroke with a 1:49.11, earning him an NCAA All-America Honorable Mention recognition and the Pirates a 49th-place national finish. Rossmiller returns for his junior season as the Pirates pursue the NWC Championship title yet again.

The Whitman Blues were voted in second-place in the poll with 52 points and one first-place vote. Despite a fourth-place regular season finish with a conference record of 4-3, the Blues swam to a second-place finish at the NWC Championships, where they tallied 489 points. Clark Sun (San Francisco, Calif.) won the 100-yard freestyle and the 200-yard freestyle and had a second-place finish in the 50-yard freestyle with a "B" time of 20.63, breaking his own school record. The Blues welcome seven first-year student-athletes in the 2018-19 season as they seek to build on their second-place 2018 NWC Championship finish.

Linfield earns third in the poll, just one point behind the Blues with 51. The Wildcats finished the 2017-18 season with a 5-2 record to place third in NWC standings. The team swam to a third-place NWC Championship finish, accruing 460.5 team points. NWC Men's Swimmer of the Year Noah Cutting (Salem, Ore.) won the men's 200-yard butterfly, outtouched the runner-up by over five seconds to finish in 1:48.86 with an NCAA Select Time. Cutting also finished first in the 100-yard butterfly with a 48.64 and in the 200-yard individual medley with a 1:50.96.

Cuttings' successful finished earned him an invitation to the NCAA Championships, where he clocked a 1:54.40 in the 200-yard individual medley and finished 18th in the 100-yard butterfly with a 49.03. Cutting returns a junior in the 2018-19 season.

Pacific Lutheran trails Linfield by four points in the poll with 47 points. The Lutes finished the 2017-18 regular season with a 6-1 record, falling only to first-seeded Whitworth. The team finished fourth at the NWC Championships with 448 team points, where Paul Jett (Sammamish, Wash.) broke his own school record in the 100-yard butterfly with a time of 50.23 and Jacob Goodman (West Hills, Calif.) broke another school record with a 51.80 in the 100-yard backstroke. Goodman returns a senior in the 2018-19 season to guide the Lutes to another season among the front of the pack in NWC standings.

Puget Sound ranks fifth in the poll, tallying 36 points. The Loggers finished fifth in both regular season standings with a record of 3-4, and at the NWC Championships where the team acquired 323 points. Dylan Reimers (Rocklin, Calif.) swam to two individual titles at the NWC Championships, finishing the 1650-yard freestyle in 16:04.99, and earning a time of 1:05.05 in the 100-yard breaststroke. Reimers returns for his junior season to guide the Loggers in the 2018-19 season.

Lewis & Clark earns 28 points to claim sixth-place. The Pioneers finished in sixth-place across the board in the 2017-18 season, earning a 2-5 conference record and finishing the NWC Championships with a team score of 302. The team returns all four members of the school record-breaking 200-yard freestyle relay for the 2018-19 season.

Willamette earns 21 points in the poll to place seventh. The Bearcats finished seventh both during the NWC regular season with a record of 1-6, and at the NWC Championships with 299 team points. Top performer Ben Hedman (Davis, Calif.) will return for his junior campaign in the 2018-19 season.

George Fox ranks eighth in the poll with 17 points. In the team's inaugural season, the Bruins welcome nine student-athletes to the roster.

Pacific (Ore.) rounds out the poll with eight points. The Boxers finished the 2017-18 regular season 0-7 and took eighth at the NWC Championship with 164 team points. The Boxers return three and welcome five first-year student-athletes in the 2018-19 season.

NWC teams will kick off head-to-head conference match-ups this weekend as all nine teams will be competing.


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