Greg Byrne's Wildcat Wednesday
Neethling Wins Again as Arizona Men's Swimming and Diving in Third Place at NCAA Championships
By: Arizona Athletics
Release: March 24, 2000
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MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. - Senior Ryk Neethling won his second individual crown of the weekend and ninth career title on the second day of competition today at the University Aquatic Center, to lead Arizona to a third-place standing (241.5 points) at the 2000 NCAA Men's Swimming and Diving Championships. Texas continues to lead the team competition with 416 points, while defending-champion Auburn is second (291). Stanford (fourth place; 185.5 points) and Tennessee (184) round out the top five.

Event 10, the 200-meter freestyle, saw Neethling trail Stanford's Adam Messner for the entire race, before making his move with only 25 meters to go in the race. Neethling out-touched Messner at the wall for his third-straight individual crown in that event, by clocking a U.S. Open time of 1:43.90. Neethling has now won nine individual titles, two shy of the NCAA record. Stanford legend Pablo Morales won 11 titles from 1984-87. Neethling will attempt to win his 10th crown tomorrow in his signature event, the 1,500m freestyle. He has claimed the crown in the mile event three-straight years. Another strong performance for the Cats in the 200m free came from junior Jay Schryver who finished eighth, in a time of 1:47.77. That swim also earned Schryver the 11th All-America nod of his career.

In the opening event of day two, the Wildcat relay team of senior Matt Allen, senior Rob Henikman, sophomore Roland Schoeman and senior Coley Stickels swam to a second-place finish in the 200m medley relay, earning 34 points. The team's time of 1:35.87 was bettered only by Texas (1:35.66).

In the 400m individual medley two Arizona swimmers qualified for the consolation finals. Junior Ben Anderson placed 13th overall (4:17.69), while freshman Jeff Dash was 15th (4:20.15).

After participating in the opening relay event, Schoeman proved his versatility by swimming in the championship finals of the 100m butterfly only two events later. Schoeman swam a time of 52.14, good enough for third place and 16 points for Arizona.

In the next event, the 100m backstroke, Allen swam to the 13th All America accolade of his career by placing seventh, in a time of 52.72. The seventh-place finish was also his career-best at the NCAA level.

Next, the swimmers took a break while the men's 3-Meter Springboard diving competition took place. Sophomore Ruben Vaca finished 18th (496.05 points) and junior Arno Bergstrom placed 28th (458.90).

The final event of the opening day saw the 800m free relay squad of Schryver, junior Scott Gaskins, Neethling and senior Nat Lewis placed fifth, in a time of 7:11.78. The race picked up 28 points for the Wildcats, allowing the team to stay in third place after day two.

The final day of the 2000 NCAA Men's Swimming and Diving Championships begins tomorrow with the prelims set to begin at 12 noon and the finals slated for 7:00 p.m. (CST).

* NOTE * All of the complete race results for both the preliminary and finals sessions from all three days can be found at two separate websites:

Margo Geer P12 WOTY
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