INDIANOLA, Iowa – Seven individual victories propelled the Simpson swimming team to a 129-71 win over Iowa Lakes Community College on senior day at the Indianola YMCA on Saturday afternoon.
"Right now we are not seeing so much improvement time-wise but I think that spending the five days together down in Texas really brought us together as a team," head coach Tom Caccia said. "I saw them coming through and they came together as a team."
Dylan Gray came up big for Simpson, placing first in two tight races in the 50-yard freestyle and 100-yard freestyle.
"I felt great in the water today and felt loose," Gray said. "My turns [were good], but my finish I think I need to work on that but I'm looking forward to Grinnell next weekend."
Gray touched the wall in 22.95 to edge Iowa Lakes' Jayc Anderson by 0.45 seconds and then followed up with a 51.90 to defeat Anderson again, this time even more handily.
"Dylan is really coming around," head coach Tom Caccia said. "I think he is ahead of where he was at the same time last year. He usually has a really good taper and we expect him to do well."
Michael Reuter joined Gray with two individual wins for himself, winning the 200-yard freestyle with a 2:01.77 and the 100-yard butterfly, a race in which he won handily with a time of 1:00.09, well ahead of Jake Oliver who finished in 1:05.72 in second for Iowa Lakes.
Kyle McKim earned the men's final first place finish on the day, winning the 100-yard breaststroke by over eight seconds at a time of 1:03.61. James Tillison won by default in both the 500-yard freestyle and 1000-yard freestyle.
Iowa Lakes won four events, led by Nate Eisenhower in the 200-yard IM and Chris Day in the 100-yard backstroke to go with two relay victories.
Iowa Lakes did not compete in either the one-meter or three-meter dives, pitting teammates JJ Hansen and Phoenix Russell against one another. Hansen won both dives, earning a 192.30 in the one-meter dive and a 193.45 in the three-meter competition.
Six seniors, Hansen, Zach Lindeberg, McKim, Tillison, Scott Wailes and Matt Van Brogen, were recognized for their careers during the meet on Saturday.
"They [the seniors] put a lot of trust in me," Caccia said "They have been with me for three years as they weren't with me when they were freshmen as I didn't recruit them but they've bought into it hook, line and sinker."
"There are a lot of memories with this senior class, especially after rooming with two of them," Gray said. "I'm going to miss them."
The Storm head to Grinnell on Friday for the first of two days at the Grinnell Invitational.