Texas Takes Early Lead At Championships
March 27, 2009
Courtesy of Texas Athletics
COLLEGE STATION, Texas - Texas freshman diver Drew Livingston set a new meet record on his way to victory in the one-meter diving event, as the Longhorns assumed the day-one lead at the 2009 NCAA Men's Swimming and Diving Championships with four top-three individual finishes and two top-four relay showings.
The Longhorns lead the three-day event with 171 points, and Auburn sits in second with 141 points. Stanford is in third with 130 points and Florida is in fourth with 107 points.
Livingston (The Woodlands, Texas) became UT's first one-meter diving champion since Troy Dumais in 2002 when he obliterated the NCAA meet record and captured the event with 442.70 points. Livingston outdistanced his nearest competitor, Purdue's David Boudia, by over 20 points. Livingston handily topped the NCAA meet record of 421.05 points set by Arizona State's Joona Puhakka in 2005. Senior Jonathan Wilcox added a fifth-place finish with 399.20 points.
Texas opened the day one finals by rewriting the school and American records it had set earlier in the day in the 200-yard freestyle relay. After clocking 1:16.22 to land the fifth seed in the preliminary round, the Longhorns lowered their mark to 1:15.90 for fourth place in the evening finals. Junior Dave Walters led off in 19.18 before giving way to freshman Jimmy Feigen, who split a staggering 18.41 - the fourth-fastest leg among the 64 legs swum in the championship and consolation final. Sophomore Scott Jostes picked up the third leg in 19.08, and junior Ben Van Roekel anchored in 19.23.
Senior Michael Klueh matched his 500 freestyle finish from the 2008 NCAA Championships by taking second place once more. Klueh finished in 4:09.32 to break his school record of 4:10.00 set a season ago at the NCAA meet. Freshman Jackson Wilcox secured his first career All-America finish by taking seventh in 4:16.19.
Junior Ricky Berens took down Nate Dusing's eight-year-old school mark in the 200 IM and placed third in 1:41.92. The time fell well under Dusing's school standard of 1:42.85 set at the 2001 NCAA Championships in College Station. Florida's Bradley Ally won the event with a new NCAA record mark of 1:40.49. Sophomore Bryan Collins tacked on nine points for Texas by winning the consolation final in 1:43.52 to become the third-fastest Longhorn in the event.
Feigen followed by becoming the first Longhorn to break 19 seconds in the 50 freestyle. The San Antonio native took second in 18.84, finishing only behind California's Nathan Adrian, who set a new American record in 18.84. Earlier in the day, Feigen broke Neil Walker's 12-year-old school record of 19.08 by clocking 19.02 in the preliminary round. Walters added a third-place consolation round finish in 19.22.
Texas capped the evening by breaking a six-year-old school mark in the 400 medley relay, as the Horns finished in 3:03.92 for fourth place. Junior Hill Taylor led off in 45.17, and senior Agustin Magruder split 52.31 on the breaststroke leg. Junior Ricky Berens picked up the butterfly in 45.10, and Walters anchored in 41.34. The relay broke the previous school mark of 3:04.47 set by Aaron Peirsol, Brendan Hansen, Ian Crocker and Chris Kemp at the 2003 NCAA Championships.
Day two of the NCAA Championships gets underway Friday at noon Central.
Texas head coach Eddie Reese
On Texas’ first-day performance
“It’s probably the best first day we’ve ever had (at the NCAA Championships). It says you better be good tomorrow morning, that’s all it says. Today’s over, it’s in the history books. To win this meet, you’ve got to swim six good sessions. We’ve got two out of the way and we’ve got four to go. I know that sounds like coach speak, but it’s simple math.”
On Michael Klueh’s second-place finish in the 500 freestyle
“That’s exactly the way he had to do it to give himself a chance to win. I really believe Michael got here in better shape for the mile than he did any of his short stuff. So, I knew this would be a struggle for him.”
On Bryan Collins’ win in the 200 IM consolation final
“Bryan couldn’t swim breaststroke a year-and-a-half ago. He is my swim success story of my life, and he deserves all the credit, but I’ll take all I can get (laughs).”
On Jimmy Feigen’s performance in the 50 freestyle
“Jimmy Feigen just lit it up in the 50, and in the 200 free relay, we had three guys that had never been to this meet on that relay. This is the toughest competition to stand up in. The only thing more difficult is probably the U.S. Olympic Trials. You get to the Trials and then the Olympics are a bit easier. We knew that somewhere he was going to do it, and to do it in this meet, in the finals, is really special. And he didn’t know it until he looked at the board.”
On Drew Livingston’s win in the one-meter diving event
“Very simply, Drew is the toughest guy I know. He decides to do something, and he does it. And he doesn’t let anything stand in his way. He’s just going to get better from here.”
On holding the lead after the first day of competition
“You’ve got to go out and do it again. Now, I’ve got more reason to be uncomfortable because we are ahead, and we want to stay ahead, but tomorrow, if you look at these medley relays, and the splits you saw…it’s going to be about who wins the close races”
Freshman diver Drew Livingston
On his 1-meter diving victory
“I kind of got into a rhythm and didn’t let any outside obstacles get in my way. I just thought about each one of my dives, and one led into another. The next thing I knew, I was in first place on the podium.”
On the team’s performances on day one
“It was golden, actually. That was exactly what we wanted to do. Even though I’m a diver, I do keep up with the swimming a lot, and those guys are my teammates whether they’re on my side of the pool or not, I always cheer for them. We knew that it was a big day, but just like Eddie Reese said, it’s time to move on to the next day, this day is history.”
On whether he felt any pressure during the one-meter event
“I had no pressure. We’re a team that relies on each other, and that helps, knowing you have a bigger and better purpose you’re diving for out there.”
2009 NCAA Men's Swimming and Diving Championships - Day 1 Texas Finals Results
200 Freestyle Relay - Championship Final
4. TEXAS (Walters 19.18, Feigen 18.41, Jostes 19.08, Van Roekel 19.23) - 1:15.90 (new school, American records)
500 Freestyle - Championship Final
2. Michael Klueh - 4:09.32 (new school record)
7. Jackson Wilcox - 4:16.19
200 IM - Championship Final
3. Ricky Berens - 1:41.92 (new school record)
200 IM - Consolation Final
1 Bryan Collins - 1:43.52
50 Freestyle - Championship Final
2. Jimmy Feigen - 18.84 (new school record)
50 Freestyle - Consolation Final
3. Dave Walters - 19.22
One-Meter Diving - Championship Final
1 Drew Livingston - 442.70 (NCAA meet record)
5 Jonathan Wilcox - 399.20
400 Medley Relay - Championship Final
4 TEXAS (Taylor 45.17, Magruder 52.31, Berens 45.10, Walters 41.34) - 3:03.92 (new school record)