COLLEGE STATION, Texas -- The University of Arizona men's swimming and diving team moved up one more place to complete the 2001 season in sixth with 251 points at the NCAA Men's Swimming and Diving Championships. The Texas Longhorns are the national champions for the second year in a row with 597.5 points. Following Texas was Stanford with 457.5 points. Placing third was Tennessee with 330.5 points, in fourth with 299 points was Southern California and in fifth place was Florida with 265 points. The event was held at the Texas A&M University Student Recreation Center Pool in College Station, Texas.
Junior diver Omar Ojeda broke another school record on the 10 meter tonight. Ojeda scored a total of 562.80 points and placed third. Junior Ruben Vaca placed 11th on 10 meter scoring 464.95 points.
"I don't try for tens, I just try to do my dives in my head because I know in finals everyone tries to do their best dives. I feel good about the meet. I enjoyed myself and I wasn't nervous," said Ojeda.
The Cat's 400 freestyle relay team made up of freshman Eric la Fleur, junior Roland Schoeman, and seniors Jay Schryver and Scott Gaskins finished third in the championship finals with the time of 2:53.17.
Arizona had two swimmers in the championship finals of the 200 butterfly, sophomore Jeff Dash and freshman Juan Veloz. Dash finished the race at 1:44.79 to place sixth followed by Veloz in seventh place at 1:45.13. During the preliminaries of the 200 butterfly Veloz broke the school record set by Dash last year when he went 1:44.59.
Schoeman was the runner-up in the 100 free at 42.58. Schoeman said, "It was 42 seconds of pain, but it was worth it. It's always great racing. Anthony (Ervin) swam hard and went 42.8, he got what he took and that's admirable just as I got what I took."
Wildcat senior Tyler Painter placed seventh in the championship finals of the 1650 freestyle when he hit the wall at 14:52.78.
When asked about the meet associate head coach Rick DeMont said, "We performed well. We lost a lot of horses from last year's team and to only drop three spots was incredible."
Michigan senior Chris Thompson crushed the NCAA record, the American record and the U.S. Open record in the 1650 freestyle by 2.69 seconds when he touched the wall at 14:26.62. The previous record was held by fellow Wolverine Tom Dolan. Dolan set the record in 1995 in the time of 14:29.31. Thompson also set a new pool record with his time in the mile.
Tying the NCAA record, the American record and the U.S. Open record of 41.80 set by Matt Biondi of California in 1987 was California sophomore Anthony Ervin. Ervin also set a new pool record with this time.
Texas' 400 freestyle relay team broke the NCAA, American, U.S. Open and pool records when they touched at 2:49.80.
A freshman from Texas, Brendan Hansen, set all new records in the 200 breastroke. Hansen broke the records, NCAA, American, U.S. Open and pool, in the time of 1:53.11.
Setting a new pool record in the 200 back was Texas senior Nate Dusing at 1:41.52.