|FEDERAL WAY, Washington, March 28. DAVE Walters of Texas, who won the USA Swimming National title in the 100 free after turning eighth, showed some more comeback ability when he snagged the 200 free at the NCAA Division I Men's Championships.
Walters, who trailed for most of the race, got his hand to the wall first in a time of 1:32.56. The performance is the eighth-best of all time, and is just off her best effort of 1:32.51 from Big 12s. Part of the field stood under the American record pace of Michael Phelps, who set the record with a 1:32.08 in 2006.
Walters gave the Longhorns their fourth win in the event all time and the first since Josh Davis won in 1993. Doug Gjertsen won the other two titles with victories in 1988 and 1990. The win is also Texas' 91st NCAA title in program history, the fifth most in NCAA annals.
"The hard work has paid off, but I owe a lot of my success to (Texas senior) Matt McGinnis, because he took the race out so fast," Walters said. "I knew I was in second place and he was about a body length ahead of me. That made me take the race and think of it as one of our workouts, when I'm beside him. It made the pain go away and made the pressure of winning the race go away. It was a reminder of the work we put in throughout the season, and those workouts with him are what enabled me to finish so well."
Defending champ Darian Townsend of Arizona placed second in 1:32.85, the 10th-quickest time ever, while Texas' Matt McGinnis, who led most of the race, finished third in 1:32.93, which now stands as the 11th-best ever. The duo now stand fifth and sixth fastest of all time with those efforts.
Additionally, Arizona's Jean Basson ripped off a 1:33.37 to claim fourth.
Arizona pushed its lead to 61 points over Texas, 265-204. Auburn (171), Stanford (166) and Michigan (160) owned the rest of the top five spots.
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Photo By: Tim Morse