Men Look to Improve at NCAA Championships
All-Americans Arunas Savickas and Aaron Russell, who led BYU to a 33rd-place tie at last year's NCAA meet, will represent the men's swimming and diving team this week at the 2001 NCAA Championships in College Station, Texas.
Savickas is no stranger to the NCAA meet as he returns for the fourth time, where he has been named an All-American the past three years. He will participate in the 100-, 200- and 500-meter freestyle events. At the 2000 NCAA Championships, Savickas finished 16th in the 200 back to earn second team All-American honors after bad luck kept him out of the finals in his best event--the 200 free.
Savickas has won the 100 free once this season, the 200 free seven times and the 500 free five different times. His time of 1:36.46 in the 200 free ranks 14th in the nation, while his time of 4:21.39 in the 500 free is 20th-best. Savickas was named the Mountain West Conference Swimmer of the Week two times this season.
Russell is making his second trip to the NCAA Championships. Last year he was named a second team All-American with his 14th-place finish on the 1-meter springboard while also finishing 24th in the 3-meter event. Russell will participate in all three diving events (1M, 3M and platform). He finished second on the 3M board with a score of 572.50 at the Zone E Diving Meet two weeks ago to qualify for nationals.
Russell won the 3-meter board at the 2001 MWC Championships with a score of 560.00 and was named MWC Diver of the Week twice. He won the 3-meter board four different times this year and the 1-meter board three times while also winning the platform event at the BYU Diving Invitational.
"I'm hoping Aaron can score points and get an All-American citation." -Diving Coach Keith Russell .
Results from this weekend's championships will be on BYU's official athletics Web page, www.byucougars.com, as they are available.