Indiana Places 15th at NCAA Championships, Hesen Claims Fourth All-America Honor
March 17, 2007
MINNEAPOLIS - Indiana junior Ben Hesen became the first IU swimmer in 28 years to reach the championship finals of two individual events and the Hoosiers finished 15th as a team at the NCAA Swimming and Diving Championships at the University Aquatic Center on the campus of the University of Minnesota on Saturday, March 17.
IU posted 72 team points for its fourth consecutive top-20 finish. Auburn won its fifth straight NCAA title with 566 points.
Hesen earned his second first team All-America citation this season with an eighth-place finish in the 200-yard backstroke in 1:43.95. The Jeffersonville, Ind., junior turned in a school-record time of 1:42.37 in the morning preliminary session. Hesen finished second in the 100-yard backstroke on March 17.
Hesen became the first Hoosier swimmer to final in more than one individual event since another legendary IU backstroker, Mark Kerry, finished fourth in the 100 back and fifth in the 200 back in 1979.
Junior Pat Penoyar finished 12th in the 200-yard breaststroke, touching in 1:57.08 to earn All-America honorable mention.
Classmate John Kevin Koehler also earned All-America honorable mention, finishing 12th in the timed finals of the 1,650-yard freestyle. The Springfield, Ohio, native posted a time of 15:03.18, bettering his previous career-low time by more than eight seconds. Koehler's effort was the fifth-best in school history in the event.
Junior Alex Brunfeldt just missed All-America standing, finishing 17th in the mile in 15:11.24.
In the morning prelims, freshman Matt Lenton was 39th in the 100-yard freestyle, stopping the clock in 44.22 to shave 0.32 seconds off his previous career best. Junior Todd Patrick was 46th in the prelims with a time of 44.44.
The Hoosiers narrowly missed qualifying for the championship final in the 400-yard freestyle, as Patrick, Lenton, Hesen and Koehler posted a time of 2:57.16 to finish 17th in the morning prelims.
"With this personnel, we were really pleased to end up 15th," Indiana head coach Ray Looze said. "It was a real good job. Six out of seven of our swimmers were All-Americans. I was really proud of the guys. With the number of guys we had here, to be a top 15 team in the country was a real impressive accomplishment. The coaching staff really takes its hat off to the team. They finished top 15 because they wanted it."
All told, Indiana earned 13 All-America citations, with Hesen leading the way with four. Penoyar nabbed three.
While the collegiate season is now officially in the books, Indiana will send select members to the Spring Championships in East Meadow, N.Y., from March 27-31.
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