NCAA Division I Men’s Champs: Georgia’s Sebastien Rouault Reclaims 1650 Title With Near U.S. Open, NCAA Record; On Demand Video Available

FEDERAL WAY, Washington, March 29. GEORGIA's Sebastien Rouault reclaimed his 2006 NCAA title with a victory in the 1650 free at the NCAA Division I Men's Championships to open the final night of swimming. Once again, Chris Thompson's NCAA and U.S. Open withstood a valiant run as Rouault scared the record.

Rouault clocked a blazing time of 14:26.86 to become the third-fastest swimmer of all time with the third-fastest swim ever.

Rouault's teammate Troyden Prinsloo placed second with the fifth-fastest time ever when he hit the wall in 14:28.06. Texas' Michael Klueh earned third with a 14:36.07 to become the 10th-fastest swimmer ever.

Klueh took the race out fast as he held under American and NCAA-record pace throughout the first 500 with a 4:21.03 at the time. That performance was under the pace of Chris Thompson's 14:26.62 – 500 split of 4:21.46. However, Klueh started losing that pace as he went over at the 600 with a 5:14.01 compared to Thompson's 5:13.77.

The Bulldogs captured the lead from Klueh at the 1100-yard mark as Rouault took control of the race over the final stretch. Rouault definitely turned on the steam as he dipped under record pace at the 1500-yard mark with a time of 13:09.11 to drop under Thompson's 13:09.74. Rouault then clocked a 14:01.42 at the 1600 mark to remain under the record with a 14:02.16.

The triumph for Georgia is the 10th all time for the Bulldogs as the program came into this weekend with seven overall titles.

"We train all year for it," Rouault said. "Today was just like training, every day is like that. We push each other, sometimes him on me, sometimes me on him. The important thing is we never let anyone into the race. We have the best team spirit too. It's the overall mindset; who wants to win. We just never give up and hang tough, [that's what it means] being a Dawg. It was hard during this race because Michael was going pretty fast, but it's important not to think about that for too long."

In the team race, Arizona held an 88-point lead over Texas, 389 to 301. Stanford (235), California (222.5) and Auburn (213) were third through fifth.

Event results


ON DEMAND VIDEO – 1650 Early Heats