Tigers Close In 6th At NCAA Championships

The Auburn men's swimming and diving team wrapped up the season on Saturday night at the NCAA Championships.

Federal Way, Wash.--Auburn went into the third and final night of competition in sixth place and finished there at the NCAA Men's Swimming and Diving Championships.

The Tigers scored 254.5 points. Cal won the title with 535.5 points with Texas the runnerup with 491 points. Stanford finished third with 426.5 while Arizona was fourth with 396 and Michigan finished fifth with 271.

Sophomore Marcelo Chierighini led the Tigers on Saturday night with a second place finish in the 100-yard freestyle. His time of 42.34 trailed only a 41.95 by Jimmy of Texas.

Chierighini also swam the anchor leg on the final event of the meet, the 400 freestyle relay. Auburn and Cal tied for second with a time of 2:50.34 behind Texas, which swam 2:49.83.

Sophomore Zane Grothe set a school-record in the 1650 freestyle with a time of14:37.59 to finish fourth place in the event. His swim was 9.5 seconds faster than the AU record he set at last year's NCAA meet. Martin Grodzki of Georgia set the pace with an NCAA record time of 14:24.08.

I'm happy with some swims tonight and the way the guys came together," Coach Brett Hawke said. "We would have loved to have found our way to the top of the podium, but we got a bunch of second and third place finishes throughout the meet. It's disappointing (to finish sixth), but at the same time it's encouraging. It keeps us hungry and focuses us for the future. We know we're close, we just want to take that next step and find our way (back to the top)."


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