Greg Byrne's Wildcat Wednesday
Burnett Takes NCAA Title in 200 Freestyle
By: Arizona Athletics
Release: March 26, 2005
Photo Courtesy: Arizona Athletics
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Minneapolis, Minn. ?- The Arizona men’s swimming and diving team completed the second day of finals action at the 2005 NCAA Championships Friday, with Simon Burnett taking the NCAA title in the 200-yard freestyle for the second time in his collegiate career, winning with a time of 1:33.28. The Wildcats are in third place with 292 points.

 Burnett was the 2003 NCAA champion in the 200-yard freestyle (1:33.69) and he currently holds the NCAA and pool record in the event as well.


“Going into the race I knew that I was going to be in a good position to win, I just needed to swim it the right way,” said Burnett. “I wanted to control the way I swam so I could save energy for the relay because that was the most important thing to me; I wanted to do my best individually and be able to do the same for the team.”


“Simon is a gamer and he put forth a great effort tonight,” said head swimming coach Frank Busch. “He’s proven himself before that he can handle pressure situations, and he proved it again tonight.”


Junior Tyler DeBerry also qualified for the championship finals of the 200-yard freestyle as he finished sixth overall with a time of 1:43.87 and freshman Jonas Persson finished 15th with a time of 1:36.50.


The 200-yard medley relay team composed of freshman Nick Thoman, senior Dave Rollins and freshmen Albert Subirats and Gerhard Zandberg, who finished third in the championship finals with a time of 1:25.38, which is also a new school record for the Wildcats.


Junior Lyndon Ferns also finished third in the championship finals of the 100-yard butterfly with a time of 46.33 and junior Dave Rollins finished seventh in the 100-yard breaststroke with a time of 53.61. In the consolation finals of the 100-yard breaststroke, freshman Ivan Barnes finished 10th  (53.95) and senior Nate Stevens finished 13th (54.44).


Thoman, who set the school record in the 100-yard backstroke this morning during preliminaries (46.92), finished seventh overall with a time of 47.50. Junior John Collier finished 11th overall in the 3-meter diving competition earlier today with 536.75 points.


For the final event of the evening, the 800-yard free relay team of Ferns, DeBerry, Persson and Burnett finished third with a time of 6:19.33.


“I am really proud of our guys and the work that they are doing,” said Busch. “We are battling but we are holding our own and we are going to have a good day tomorrow.”


The Wildcats will finish competition at the 2005 NCAA Championships tomorrow at the University Aquatic Center at 12 p.m. (CST) for preliminary action and finals will begin at 7 p.m.



School Records Broken


               Event                        Name                                Time                        Old Time

200 IM                        Dave Rollins                        1:44.42                        1:46.25 (2004)

100 back                        Nick Thoman                        46.92                        47.20 (2000)

400 Medley Relay      Zandberg/Barnes/Ferns/Burnett          3:07.57                        3:10.65 (2004)

200 Medley Relay     Thoman/ Rollins/Subirats/Zandberg          1:25.38                        1:25.89 (2000)



More Simon Burnett Quotes:


“ I was worried the entire time, there can always be surprises and anything could go wrong. When I saw a guy edging up on me during the turn of my last 50-yards, I knew I had to turn it on.”


“When I won my freshman year it was a huge surprise because we were kind of an underdog team and the whole NCAA meet experience was different to me. This time there was a lot of pressure because I came into the race with the NCAA record, so it was more of a relief to win this time around.”





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