GENEVA, Ohio – It took all of 400 yards for Julian Milinkovskyi to do something that had only been done once before in four years of Lake Erie Swimming & Diving: earn a top-eight finish in an NCAA Championship event.
Competing in his third national title meet in as many years, Milinkovskyi carded his NCAA-II All-American finish by touching in with a time of 3:58.07 in the men's 400-yard individual medley on Thursday. Milinkovskyi qualified for Thursday's championship final by earning an LEC-record time of 3:53.57 in the morning preliminaries.
His eighth-place finish marks the second All-America finish in the four-year history of Lake Erie's program. Teammate and fellow 2014 qualifier Ivan Cizmar placed seventh in the 200 backstroke at the 2012 championships. Milinkovskyi went into the event with the 11th-best 400 IM time in the nation, a mark of 3:58.31.
Thursday's finish continued what has already been a good week for the Storm swimmer. Milinkovskyi scored a 10th-place finish in the 200 IM on Wednesday. The Ukraine native tallied a Kenyon pool record (200 IM) last month, less than two weeks after scoring 85 points to lead the LEC men to a fifth-place finish at the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Championship, an event held at the same site as this week's NCAA title meet – the Spire Aquatics Center in Geneva, Ohio.
Milinkovskyi's 400 IM time on Thursday in Geneva marks the sixth event for which he now owns Lake Erie's top time this season. He has also posted LEC's top swims in the 200 freestyle, 100 and 200 breaststrokes, 100 butterfly and 200 IM.
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