Four Gophers Earn All-America Awards
The Minnesota men’s swimming and diving team picked up All-America honors in four events on the second day of competition at the NCAA Championships at University Aquatic Center. Senior Ivan Gutesa led the way for Minnesota with an individual eighth-place finish in the 100 breaststroke. The Gophers stand in 14th place as a team with 68 points and are pursuing an amazing 20th straight top-15 finish at the NCAA Championships.
California has a commanding lead as it goes for its first NCAA team title since 1980. The Bears have 352 points, followed by Texas (288.5), Stanford (278.5), Arizona (214) and Florida (213).
Gutesa earned first team All-America honors for the first time in his career by finishing eighth in the 100 breaststroke with a time of 53.40. California’s Damir Dugonjic won the title for the third straight year with a new Aquatic Center record time of 50.94. Gutesa is Minnesota’s first All-America first teamer in the 100 breast since Jeff Hackler in 2003. After finishing third at the Big Ten Championships last month, he was the top finisher from the conference at the NCAA Championships.
Senior diver Drew Brown earned All-America honors for the second time in as many years by placing 13th on the 3-meter springboard. Brown tallied 364.80 points in the consolation final after scoring 378.30 points in the preliminaries.
In the 200 medley relay, the Gophers earned an 11th place finish with a time of 1:26.46. The team of Goran Majlat , Gutesa, Kevin Baseheart and Michael Richards earned honorable mention All-America honors with their performance. Richards was the star of the relay, anchoring in 18.98. It marked the 11th All-America honor for Richards, the second for Gutesa, the fourth for Baseheart and the first for Majlat.
The Gophers ended the night with an All-America swim by the 800 freestyle relay. Head coach Dennis Dale patched together a team of Curt Carlson , Kyler Van Swol , Derek Toomey and Baseheart that managed to finish 15th overall with a time of 6:31.36 to pick up key team points and All-America certificates. It marked the 12th All-America award for Carlson, the fifth for Baseheart and the second for Toomey and Van Swol. It is also the eighth straight year the 800 free relay has picked up All-America honors.
The meet concludes tomorrow with the prelims at noon and the finals at 7 p.m.