Feb. 25, 2006
2006 Big Ten Championships Final Results in PDF Format
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BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Northwestern added two more conference titles to its caché Saturday night at the Big Ten Championships, bringing its total to seven for the weekend as the Wildcats finished in fourth place as a team.
Junior Matt Grevers (Lake Forest, Ill./Lake Forest), named the Big Ten's Co-Swimmer of the Year, picked up his third individual gold and fifth overall with a victory in the 100 free, while junior Mike Alexandrov (Champaign, Ill./Centennial) out-touched a pair of competitors for the 200 breast title.
As a team, Northwestern finished with 421 points, 63.5 points ahead of fifth-place Ohio State and 104 points behind Michigan. Indiana claims the Big Ten team championship with 760.5 points.
Freshman Eric Nilsson (Weston, Mass./Weston) opened Saturday's finals with an NCAA 'B' time of 15:32.85 in the 1650 free to place 11th for the Wildcats and point in his third event of the meet.
Sophomore Daniel Walls (Tucson, Ariz./Sabino) swam a great mile for Northwestern, knocking 44 seconds off of his seed time to turn in a 16:00.87. Freshman Andy Long (Aurora, Ill./Waubonsie Valley) dropped 20 seconds from his seed to finish just behind his teammate with a 16:03.26. The pair finished 28th and 29th, respectively.
No Wildcats scored in the 200 back event, although freshman Adam Beckman (Kearney, Neb./Kearney), freshman Dmitri Kouzmine (Novosibirsk, Russia/Evanston Township) and sophomore Eric Simpson (Wellesley, Mass./Wellesley) all participated in the bonus final.
Grevers then took his third individual gold medal of the meet, swimming an NCAA 'A' time of 43.07 to claim the 100 free title. Teammate Kyle Bubolz
(Waukesha, Wis./Waukesha North) placed second with the only other 'A' time in the field, notching a 43.44.
"It has been a struggle; this is a very tough meet," Grevers said. "I have been a part of a lot of tough races. This was my last individual event and I wanted to try and take it. It was even more important to me that Kyle [Bubolz] finished next to me and we got the 1-2 finish. We did it last year in the 50 [free], didn't get to do it again this year and so we were really looking for it in the 100 and we got it. This has been my favorite moment of the meet so far."
Senior Ben Dexter (Indianapolis, Ind./Roncalli) swam a 45.58 to finish third in the bonus final of the event.
Alexandrov followed with his first title of 2006, avenging his close loss in the 100 breast by breaking the pool and 13-year-old Big Ten record in the 200 breast with an 'A' cut of 1:55.19. The top three finished within .05 seconds of each other in a fantastic race.
"In the beginning, I was just trying to do my own race while swimming against some of the best breaststrokers in the country," Alexandrov said. "When I hit the wall, I looked up at my parents to see their reaction. When I saw them excited I looked at the board and that's when I knew."
Sophomore Adam Lewno (Racine, Wis./J.I. Case) earned a second swim in the bonus heat of the 200 breast, where he swam a 2:06.08 after turning in a 2:05.88 in the prelims.
Senior Brian Davis (Issaquah, Wash./Issaquah) then won the consolation final of the 200 fly, swimming a 1:48.76 to earn nine points for Northwestern.
Senior diver Mike Oxman (Mequon, Wis./Homestead) saved the best diving of his career for his final Big Ten Championships event, scoring a 369.30 in the finals of the platform for a third-place finish.
In the final relay of the 2006 Championships, the Wildcats' 400 free squad fell just short of Minnesota, finishing in second place with a 2:53.11, .21 seconds out of first. Alexandrov, Bubolz, Nilsson and Grevers comprised the relay for the 'Cats.
For the complete meet results from all three days of competition, click on the .pdf link at the top of this page.