Virginia Men Qualify 10 for NCAA Championships
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – The Virginia men’s swimming team qualified 10 student-athletes for the 2011 NCAA Championships, set for March 24-26 in Minneapolis, Minn.
Tom Barrett, Jon Daniec, Peter Geissinger, Taylor Grey, Matt Houser, David Karasek, Matt McLean, Matt Murray, Scot Robison and Taylor Smith have each been selected to participate in the NCAA Championships. All five Virginia relays also qualified for the national meet.
“It’s a wonderful opportunity for this team and this group of seniors to give it one more go,” Virginia head coach Mark Bernardino said. “We knew we had a couple of athletes who were going to be right on the bubble and the great news is they both made it in (Daniec and Smith in the 1650 freestyle). We are excited to see how well we can perform on the big stage.”
Three seniors – McLean, Robison and Smith – will compete for the final time in a Virginia cap at the NCAA Championships. The class of 2011 was crowned ACC champions all four years swimming for Virginia and this trio will be swimming at the NCAA meet for the fourth straight year.
Meanwhile, Daniec and Grey – two freshmen – will join Barrett, Houser and Murray, all sophomores, in making their NCAA Championships debut.
McLean and Robison both automatically qualified for the national meet with NCAA ‘A’ times at the conference championships.
McLean clocked a NCAA ‘A’ time of 4:13.52 with his victory in the 500 freestyle at the ACC Championships, a mark that ranks second nationally. He is also the No. 3 seed in the 1650 freestyle after an ‘A’ time of 14:42.73, his second individual ACC win at the conference meet last month.
Robison is the No. 2 seed in the 200 freestyle with a NCAA ‘A’ time of 1:32.52 which he clocked en route to victory at the ACC Championships. He is also the No. 4 seed in the 100 freestyle with a mark of 42.32 – the nation’s top ‘B’ cut.
Virginia’s 800 freestyle relay will enter the national meet with the second-fastest time in the country of 6:16.72. The 400 freestyle relay is also the No. 4 national seed with a mark of 2:51.26. Both relays were victorious and recorded the NCAA ‘A’ times at the conference championships.
“We have some incredibly high seeds that we are very excited about,” Bernardino said. “With word of the selections, we looking forward to competing more than ever. We think we have some athletes who can challenge for some very high national finishes.”
The highest finish in school history for the Cavaliers was a ninth-place showing in 2009.
2011 Men’s NCAA Qualifiers
200 Medley Relay
400 Medley Relay
200 Free Relay
400 Free Relay
800 Free Relay
Tom Barrett, Sophomore
Jon Daniec, Freshman
Peter Geissinger, Junior
Taylor Grey, Freshman
Matt Houser, Sophomore
David Karasek, Junior
Matt McLean, Senior
Matt Murray, Sophomore
Scot Robison, Senior
Taylor Smith, Senior