Texas Invite Second Day Features Top Swims

AUSTIN, Texas, December 1. TOP-ranked Texas scored a victory in the 800-yard freestyle relay and registered a total of seven NCAA provisional-qualifying marks Friday in day two of the Texas Invitational at the Lee and Joe Jamail Texas Swimming Center. The Longhorns sit in second place with one day remaining with 499.50 points. Arizona sits atop the standings with 528 points. In the women's meet, University of Texas senior Elizabeth Tinnon broke her own school record in the 100-yard breaststroke with an historic performance to lead the Longhorns.

Texas' 800-yard freestyle relay quartet of sophomore Michael Klueh (Evansville, Ind.), freshmen Dave Walters (Yorktown, Va.) and Ricky Berens (Charlotte, N.C.) and senior Matt McGinnis (Raleigh, N.C.) captured the event in a NCAA provisional-qualifying time of 6:28.29.

Texas also fared well in the 200 medley relay, as senior Tommy Sacco (Dallas, Texas), senior Tyler O'Halloran (Boardman, Ohio), Berens and senior Garrett Weber-Gale (Fox Point, Wis.) took second with a NCAA provisional-qualifying time of 1:28.45.

Klueh added the top individual performance for the Longhorns, taking third in the 400 individual medley with a NCAA "B" cut time of 3:49.78. McGinnis contributed another NCAA "B" cut time in the 200 freestyle, clocking 1:35.56 for fifth place.

Two current Longhorns were joined by world-record holder and former Longhorn Brendan Hansen in the 100 breaststroke. Hansen took the event in 53.76, while junior Matt Lowe (Minot, N.D.) took fifth in 54.96 and O'Halloran placed sixth in 55.15.

Sacco and junior Daniel Rohleder (Austin, Texas) notched the final NCAA provisional-qualifying times of the night for the Longhorns in the 100 backstroke. Sacco touched the wall in 48.65 for sixth place, and Rohleder followed closely behind in 48.81.

Freshman Mike Wong (Cerritos, Calif.) added a fifth-place finish in the three-meter diving event with a total of 319.85.

In women's action, Tinnon (Bowling Green, Ky.), who led by a quarter second after the first 50 yards at 28.20, finished in just under a minute at 59.96, topping her school-record mark of 1:00.14. Tinnon becomes the first Longhorn ever to break the one-minute mark in the 100 breaststroke.

Notably, the time stands as the fastest in collegiate swimming this season. Tinnon had already automatically qualified to compete in the event at the 2007 NCAA Championships. Senior Leah Avilla (Livermore, Calif.) took fourth with a NCAA automatic-qualifying time of 1:01.61, and sophomore Alexi Spann (Austin, Texas) placed sixth with a NCAA "B" cut time of 1:02.37.

"It's been a long time coming," said UT coach Kim Brackin. "Elizabeth is extremely talented, and she has been working toward that for years. She has put it together, and I think her teammates motivated her. All three of them (Tinnon, Avilla and Spann) had great swims. They were just ready to show what they could do."

Junior diver Mary Yarrison (Springfield, Va.) placed second in the one-meter diving event with a final score of 278.40. Sophomore Kathryn Kelly (Longwood, Fla.) took third with a total of 274.15.

Texas fared well in the 800 freestyle relay, as the quartet of senior Elaine Ferritto (Columbus, Ohio), senior Katie Robinson (Dillsboro, Ind.), freshman Alex Basso (Houston, Texas) and senior Connie Brown (Andover, Mass.) took second in 7:19.62 to provisionally qualify for the 2007 NCAA Championships.

The Longhorns' 200 medley relay quartet of Brown, Tinnon, Robinson and Basso took third with a NCAA provisional-qualifying time of 1:40.20.

Brown added a pair of NCAA "B" cut performances to continue her string of solid performances throughout the meet. Brown placed fourth in the 200 freestyle in 1:47.92 and took fifth in the "B" final of the 100 backstroke in 55.34.

Texas sits in third place after the second day of competition with 406 points. Arizona sits atop the standings with 575 points, while Stanford sits in second with 539 points.