IOWA CITY, Iowa -- Texas sophomore Will Licon and freshman Joseph Schooling captured their first national titles on an historic night for the Longhorns Friday evening at the 2015 NCAA Division I Men's Swimming and Diving Championships at Iowa.
Texas entered night two at the NCAA Championships with a 52-point lead against second-place California and pulled away from the field through the meet's second of three days. Well within range of its 11th NCAA team title, Texas leads the competition with 399 points heading into the final day, while California sits in second with 275 points. Michigan sits in third with 210 points while Florida holds fourth place with 205 points. Southern California rounds out the top-five with 197 points.Licon became the fourth-fastest swimmer ever in the 400-yard individual medley, and he knocked off the event's American record holder, Georgia's Chase Kalisz, en route to victory in 3:36.37, about three seconds off his school record from the morning preliminary round. Licon and Kalisz were nearly even at the 200-yard mark before Licon methodically pulled away. Licon led Kalisz by nearly a second at 300 yards and powered his way to victory in the final 100 to become UT's first NCAA champion in the 400 IM at 3:36.37.
The Longhorns stretched their cushion over the rest of the field due in large part to their historic performance in the 100 butterfly, where Texas became the first school to place six finalists in a single event at the NCAA Championships. Schooling eclipsed Ian Crocker's 11-year-old school mark in the event and won in 44.51.
The London Olympian from Singapore became UT's first freshman swimmer to win an NCAA individual crown since Austin Surhoff in 2010 (200 IM) and the first Longhorn to win the NCAA 100 fly crown since Crocker in 2004.
All-America sophomore Jack Conger took a close second behind Schooling at 44.55, as both Longhorns dipped below Crocker's school mark of 44.72 from the 2004 Big 12 Championships. Senior Tripp Cooper took third in 45.06 while Will Glass placed fourth at 45.56. Matt Ellis placed sixth at 46.12 while John Murray rounded out the Texas finishers in eighth at 46.72.
Texas opened the night by placing third in the 200 medley relay in 1:23.46, good for the second-fastest relay in school history. Kip Darmody led off in 21.29 before Murray picked up the breaststroke leg in 23.55. Schooling split 19.91 on the butterfly leg before Brett Ringgold anchored in an impressive 18.71 seconds.
Clay Youngquist notched a personal best in the 200 freestyle preliminary round at 1:32.85 and later took third in the event's championship final at 1:33.10. The swim marked Youngquist's top individual finish in four NCAA Championships appearances. Clark Smith took third in the 200 freestyle consolation final at 1:33.87. Freshman Austin Temple made his first individual finals appearance and placed fifth in the 100 breaststroke consolation final at 52.62.
Texas capped the night by taking eighth in the 800 freestyle relay timed final at 6:18.03.