AUSTIN – On Saturday evening, University of Pennsylvania sophomore swimmer Chris Swanson posted the best finish at the NCAA Division I Men’s Swimming and Diving Championships the Quakers have produced in years with his 9th place finish in the 1650 freestyle. This year’s championships were held at the Lee and Joe Jamail Texas Swimming Center.
Throughout program history, only two athletes -- one swimmer and one diver -- from Penn finished within the top ten at NCAAs. In 1993, Steve Kuster placed 9th in the 200 fly; in 1975, current diving coach Rob Cragg placed 5th in the 3 meter.
Dropping 4.12 seconds from his qualifying time, Swanson touched the wall at 14:49.63 and earned nine team points, which was the most points any of the Ivy League institutions recorded at NCAAs this year.
Swanson qualified for the 1650 after setting a new meet record, Blodgett Pool record, and Penn varsity record at the Ivy League Championships this year with a time of 14:53.75. Going into the event Saturday evening in Texas, Swanson was ranked 11th in the country.
Last year at NCAAs, he placed 33rd with a time of 15:12.85.
On the first day in Texas, Swanson competed in the 500 freestyle preliminaries Thursday afternoon. He qualified for the event with a time of 4:18.31 at the Ivy League Championships this year.
Swanson bested his NCAA finish and time in the 500 free from last year; he placed 44th in prelims with a time of 4:23.89. This year, he finished 38th in the nation with a time of 4:20.70.