California claims national crown, Horns finish second

Lauren Giudice

The fourth-ranked Longhorns had their hopes for a repeat national title spoiled by California over the weekend.
Drew Livingston finished fifth in the platform diving event on Saturday, bringing Texas within 13 points of first place. But California went on to win the 4×100 freestyle relay, the meet’s final race, ensuring itself of the championship. The Texas team of Dax Hill, Jimmy Feigen, Miles Joye and Austin Surhoff finished fourth in the relay, delivering the Longhorns second place.

Texas’ run at the 2011 NCAA Championships was highlighted by Eric Friedland and Michael McBroom’s individual victories. But the Longhorns finished with 470.5 points, 22.5 behind the Bears. Stanford finished third.

McBroom won the 1,650-yard freestyle, and Friedland won the 200 breaststroke.

“I just wanted to get out there and go after it,” Friedland said. “I went after it, and I just held on in the last 50 [yards]. But I felt good out there. I was relaxed during the race, and it means a lot to come out and win this event.”

McBroom’s time of 14 minutes, 32.86 seconds is a new school record in the 1,650 and is Texas’ first NCAA victory in that event.

“I dropped 18 seconds from my personal best, so I was pretty excited,” McBroom said. “I was trying to hold an even pace through the whole race and bring it home at the end. It was a little better than I had planned. I had my whole team down the side of the pool, and my lap counter helped pace me the whole way.”

Feigen was runner-up in the 100 freestyle — his time of 41.66 seconds was Texas’ second-fastest time in this event ever.
Friedland was in good company in the 200 breaststroke. Nick D’Innocenzo finished third, and Scott Spann finished in sixth.

Texas finished the meet with 17 top-five finishes. Unfortanitly the multiple top-five finshes were not enough to give Texas coach Eddie Reese his 11th NCAA title. This is his ninth carrer runner-up finish at Texas.