Greg Byrne's Wildcat Wednesday
Arizona Captures Four NCAA Titles During Second Day of Competition
By: Arizona Athletics
Release: March 17, 2007
Photo Courtesy: Arizona Athletics
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Minneapolis, Minn. ?- The No. 5 Arizona men’s swim team made a splash during the second day of competition at the 2007 NCAA Championships after capturing four national titles in seven swimming events, while breaking two NCAA records to remain in second place with 278 points.


            After suffering a disqualification in the 200 medley relay, Arizona quickly bounced back to post the most successful night of competition at the meet in the history of the program.


            “Tonight started off a little low with the (200 medley) relay disqualifying, that was difficult,” head coach Frank Busch said. “But sometimes with setbacks something good can happen and obviously the rest of the night turned into something magical.”


            Junior Albert Subirats started off the action for the Cats, as he became the second man in NCAA history to win two events in one night, capturing both the 100 fly and 100 back crowns. Jay Mortenson of Stanford is the only other swimmer to accomplish this, as he won the same events in 1988.


            Subirats not only smashed his own school record in the 100 fly, but the NCAA record as well, winning with a time of 44.57.


 “(Breaking the record was) definitely a big goal for me,” Subirats said. “I didn’t know it was going to happen; Ian Crocker is the best flyer there has been so far. I just really wanted to go 44 in the fly for the first time ever and I am glad I did.”


            Two races later, Subirats broke another one of his school records in the 100 back with a time of 44.83, posting the first national title in the event in school history.


“I just try to feed off of the energy of the team and the coaches,” Subirats said. “It was an amazing race and everything about it went the way I wanted it to. I am very happy about it. It’s incredible (to double-up in NCAA titles) and a great experience and hopefully I will be able to repeat it next year.”


Junior Darian Townsend led the 200 free as one of four Wildcats qualified for the championship heat. Townsend won with a personal and season best time of 1:33.29. Townsend’s title marks the fourth victory in the event in five years for Arizona, as Simon Burnett was a three-time champion during his tenure at Arizona.


“It’s a bit of a relief,” Townsend said. “I had a down year during my sophomore year and transferred colleges; it just got better and better and it feels good to get one under my belt.”

            Arizona finished all four competitors in the top five of the event, as senior Adam Ritter finished third (1:33.76), freshman Jean Basson finished fourth (1:33.85) and sophomore Nicolas Nilo finished fifth (1:33.90), each posting a personal best time.


            Junior Ivan Barnes contributed to the team’s success, as he finished eighth in the 100 breast with a time of 53.46.


            Topping off tonight’s excitement was the 800 free relay team of Nilo, Basson, Townsend and Ritter, which defended it’s national title for the second straight year, while breaking a second NCAA record with a time of 6:14.14.


“We have been talking about this relay for a long time and we all knew that we could break this record,” Nilo said. “We got together before (for the open 200) and it was like racing ourselves (during the relay) for our fastest times, so (this win) was awesome.”



Records Broken After Day Two Prelims


Adam Ritter                                       200 IM            1:41.72            school

Subirats, Nilo, Ritter, Townsend       200 FR            1:16.26            school

Albert Subirats                                   100 back          44.83               school, UM pool

Albert Subirats                                   100 fly              44.57               NCAA, school, UM pool

Nilo/ Basson/ Townsend/ Ritter        800 free relay   6:14.14            NCAA, school, UM pool



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