Oct. 5, 1999
The Florida State men’s swimming and diving team returns to competition
after a 12th place finish at the NCAA Championships last year and a
second place finish at the ACC Championships. Despite having to replace
four All-Americans and two national champions, the 1999-2000 season
looks to be a strong rebuilding year.
“We have lots of good returnees with ACC experience and lots of
youth, which should be a good combination,” First year Head Coach Neil
Harper said. “There is a lot of potential and talent on this team and
with the loss of those All-Americans, our younger swimmers will have to
step it up.”
The Seminoles return three All-Americans this year for their
senior campaign in Brett Petersen, Kevin Flanagan and Nelson Mora.
Petersen, a senior from East London, South Africa, placed 4th in the 100
Breast and competed in the 200 Breast in the Pan-Pacific Championships
this summer and competed in both evetns at the NCAA’s. Flanagan, who
came to FSU from Honolulu, Hawaii, competed in the 50 and 100 Free at
the NCAA’s. Mora, who transferred to FSU from Miami, competed in the 200
Free and Fly events at the championships. All three Seminoles were also
a key part of the relays at the NCAA’s.
“Kevin is our fastest returning sprint freestyler,” Harper said.
“From there it’s wide open on the sprint side. Nelson will definitely
give us good points in the 200 Fly and Free as well as the 500 Free and
Brett will be our top 100 Breaststroker.”
“We’re expecting those NCAA qualifiers from last year to return
to the championships and bring with them many new faces,” Harper said.
“There are some potential NCAA individual qualifiers from the younger
swimmers who could make this their breakout year.”
Distance swimmers Danny Chocron and Bill Schultz also return for
their senior campaign. Chocron, who competes in the open water
competitions for Venezuela, finished 2nd in the 25K Open Water
competition at the Pan-Pacific Championships in Sydney this summer.
Schultz, who came to FSU from Bowie, Md., finished 10th in the 1650 Free
at the ACC Championships. Greg Main-Baillie, a junior from
Pietermaritzburg, South Africa, also returns for the Seminoles after
competing in the Pan-Pacific Championships this summer where he finished
12th in the 50 Free.
Three divers return for their senior campaign. Brent Burkman,
Glenn Gonzales and Ben Nuttall all return after top finishes in dual
meets and at the ACC Championships. Burkman took the top finish as he
finished third on the 1 and 3-meter springboards at the ACC
The Seminoles welcome 12 newcomers to the roster,
including three transfers and nine freshmen. Lou Dondero, a junior from
Broward Community College, was an NJCAA All-American in 1997 and 1998 on
both springboards and placed third on both boards in those two years.
Sophomore Steven Forsen joins the Seminoles from Cleveland State
University where he won the 100 and 200 Fly at the Midwestern Collegiate
Conference championships last year. Freshmen Devon Crock, who was a
Senior National qualifier in the 100 Fly, and Matt Walllace will bolster
the Fly events this year. Chris Brosche and Justin Betts will have an
immediate impact in the Breaststroke and Joey Marshburn and Nnamnse
Ammons will also step up in the sprint freestyle, both events that were
left open with the loss of National Champion Brendon Dedekind.
“The freshman and transfers are going to be an important part of
the depth and relays this year,” Harper said. “Our veterans will have to
lead a young squad but we will look to these newcomers to rise to the
challenge, especially come the ACC Championships. With all the talent
and potential we have, it looks to be a really good year.”