Five Qualify for NCAA Swimming Championships
March 17, 2009
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - After a year of record breaking performances the NCAA Championship psych sheets have been released, and five will represent Penn State in College Station, Texas March 26-28. Seniors Jason Goldner, Vincent Reydams and Patrick Schirk along with junior Basil Kaaki and freshman Brian Alden will compete in five individual events and two relays.
Goldner will be competing in his second NCAA Championship. Last year he was on the 400 freestyle relay team that placed 16th earning him honorable mention All-America status. This year he qualified for the 50 freestyle and will likely have a leg in both the 200 and 400 freestyle relays. He posted the third fastest time for Penn State in the 50 free this season with a time of 19.99 and is currently sixth all-time. He was also part of the 200 free relay team that broke a nine-year-old record at the Big Ten Championships this year with a time of 1:18.26.
Reydams will be making his third trip to the NCAA Championships. Last year, he tied for 16th in the 50 freestyle earning honorable mention All-America status. This year he has qualified for the 50 and 100 free and will be a part of both the 200 and 400 freestyle relays. He has the top 50 free time this year at 19.60 which he set at the Big Ten Championships moving him up to second all-time in the Penn State record book. He is also second all-time in the 100 free clocking in at 43.50 at the Big Ten Championships.
All eyes will be on Schirk as he defends his 200 backstroke title and swims for his first 100 backstroke championship. Last year he made Penn State history as he became the first swimmer (man or woman) to win an individual national championship. He swam the 200 back in 1:40.22, shattering his own school record of 1:42.37, as he touched the wall to claim the crown. He also placed eighth in the 100 back to become a two-time All-American. Schirk hasn't lost a beat as he continually set the bar in backstroke events. He still holds the all-time records for both events in the Penn State record book. This will be his third trip to the NCAA Championships.
Kaaki has had a profound impact on the relay teams this year will be making his first trip to the NCAA Championships for his efforts. This year he has posted top five times in both the 50 and 100 freestyle and was part of the 200 freestyle relay team that broke a nine-year-record with a time of 1:18.26 for a fourth place finish at the Big Ten Championships. His 50 free relay time of 20.19 is a personal best and placed him at ninth all-time in the Penn State record book.
Alden has had a remarkable freshman year and has earned his first trip to the NCAA Championships for his efforts. He has continually moved up the charts and is currently fourth all-time in both the 50 freestyle (19:83) and the 100 freestyle (43.75). He has had a significant impact on the relay teams as well by helping to break a nine-year-old record in the 200 free relay with a time of 1:18.26 at the Big Ten Championships. Alden also scored points in every event he competed in at Big Ten's helping the Lions to a seventh place finish overall. He will be the first freshman from Penn State at the NCAA Championships since Mike Alderman competed in the 3-meter springboard at the 2003 championships.
Last year, Penn State tied for 23rd at the NCAA Championships with 33 points spanning the 50 and 200 freestyle, the 100 and 200 backstroke, the 200 IM and the 200 and 400 freestyle relays. The 2009 Swimming and Diving Championships will take place March 26-28 in College Station, Texas on the campus of Texas A&M.