By Kevin Noth, SwimInfo Special Correspondent
Photos by Tim Morse
MINNEAPOLIS, Minn., March 26. RYAN Lochte of Florida was not about to have history repeat itself. Lochte missed capturing the 100 backstroke title by .03 after being out-touched by Northwestern’s Matt Grevers in last night’s finals.
This time the Gator junior left nothing to chance in the 200 back, blowing away the field in a NCAA meet record time of 1:38.37, only .08 off his American record. Lochte opened with a sizzling split of 22.97 and continued to pour it on, clocking 25.26 on the second 50 split and 24.79 on his third 50. Lochte had a length-and-a-half lead heading into the final 50, but clearly had his record in mind as he kicked it in at 25.35.
Doug Van Wie of Auburn came up for second, but was nearly three full seconds behind the champion at 1:41.24. Chris DeJong of Michigan was only .02 back in third.
Hongzhe Sun of Stanford placed fourth (1:41.62) and Chard Barlow of Auburn was fifth (1:41.80). Nate O’Brien (Texas), Adam Mania (Wisconsin) and Kris Wiebeck captured sixth through eighth, respectively.