Danon, Eder reach NCAA 'B' cuts at UAA championships

ATLANTA, Ga. -- The Brandeis men's swimming and diving team finished in eighth place at the 2010 University Athletic Association championships at Emory University. The Judges had a pair of NCAA Division III performances at the meet.

On the first full day of competition at the 2010 University Athletic Association championships at Emory University, the Brandeis men's swimming and diving team had a pair of individual scorers and some fine relay performances.

Senior James Liu (Longmeadow, Mass./Longmeadow) had the Judges' top individual performance in the 50-yard freestyle. Liu finished in 11th place with a time of 21.71 seconds, improving by one spot on his 12th-place finish in qualifying. Junior Aaron Bennett (Setauket, N.Y./Ward Melville) set a school record in the 500-yard freestyle in qualifying with a time of 4:44.39, shaving nearly two seconds off the previous record set by Robert Morse '09 last season. Bennett swam a bit slower in the finals, finishing in 14th place with a time of 4:44.99, two spots behind his seed after the qualifying heats.

In relay action, Liu and Bennett helped the Judges set another school record in the 400 medley relay. With a fifth-place time of 3:32.18, the team of rookie Daniel Danon (Istanbul, Turkey), sophomore Marc Eder (Princeton, N.J./Lawrenceville School), Bennett and Liu shaved just under four-tenths of a second off a record that had stood since 2005.

On the third day of action, the Judges had their first NCAA 'B' cut performance of the season. In the 100-yard butterfly, two Brandeis swimmers qualified for the finals, and Danon earned a fifth-place finish with a lifetime best time of 51.17 seconds. That met the NCAA standard by eight-hundredths of a second and missed All-UAA honors by 0.09. Liu also reached the finals and placed seventh overall with a time of 51.51 seconds. Bennett also scored for the Judges in the 100 fly, tying for 15th place in 52.87 seconds. Eder also qualified for a championship race, with the seventh-fastest time in qualifying for the 100-breaststroke (59.80 seconds), eventually finishing eighth in 1:00.13, while placing 16th in the 400 individual medley with a time of 4:18.50.

Brandeis also put two swimmers in the top 16 in the 100 backstroke, as Danon finished 10th with a time of 54.05 seconds and senior Justin Wellins (Canyon County, Calif./Canyon) placed 15th in 55.61 seconds.

On the final day of action, the Judges had two more finalists, including their second NCAA performance of the meet. Eder has a chance to participate in his second-straight national championships, thanks to his fifth-place finish in the 200-yard breaststroke. He posted a time of 2:07.59, meeting the NCAA 'B' cut by more than half a second. He was just three-tenths of a second shy of earning the team's first All-UAA honor of the meet.

Liu was the team's second 'A' finalist of the day, placing eighth in the 100-yard freestyle with a time of 47.26 seconds, just under a second out of All-UAA honors. Bennett added another top-16 performance by coming in 12th in the 200-yard butterfly in 1:55.22. Other scorers on the last day of action included rookie Aaron Lefland (North Haven, Conn./North Haven), who was 22nd in the 200 breaststroke (2:17.98), senior Jesse Hershman (Canyon Country, Calif./Canyon), who was 22nd in the 200 back (2:03.63) and rookie Antonio Cancio (Hollywood, Fla./Miramar), who was 24th in the 200 back (2:38.40).

The Judges finished the meet in eighth place with 547.5 points, 85 points behind seventh-place Rochester.

COMPLETE RESULTS