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Swimmer Grevers Defends National Title; Wrestler Herbert Takes Second at NCAAs

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March 28, 2006

Junior swimmer Matt Grevers defended his NCAA Championship last weekend in the 100-yard backstroke. Grevers defeated Doug Van Wie of Auburn by .29 seconds in the finals by turning in a time of 45.93.

He swam a 22.24 for the first 50 yards and never trailed. Grevers is Northwestern’s first two-time national swimming champion since Bill Heusner won the 1,500 freestyle in 1948 and 1949.

Grevers defeated Florida Olympian Ryan Lochte in 2005 with a school record 45.62 to earn his first national title.

“It wasn’t pretty, but I got it done I guess,” said Grevers. “I thought I would go a little faster, but that really doesn’t matter because I got the win, and that’s what I really wanted.”

For the second consecutive year, Northwestern finished the NCAA Championships in the top 10. The Wildcats concluded this year’s meet in 10th place with 183.5 points, 13.5 points behind No. 9 Georgia and 47 points ahead of No. 11 Minnesota. Auburn came from behind to win the team title by 40 points over Arizona. The Wildcats were the second-highest placing Big Ten team behind No. 8 Michigan.

Northwestern finished eighth last year.

Close call for runner-up Herbert

After having one of the most impressive seasons in Northwestern wrestling history, two-time All-American Jake Herbert ended his historic year by finishing a career-best second place at 174 lbs. at the NCAA Wrestling Championships. Herbert, who fell to Missouri's Ben Askren in the championship bout, finished the 2006 campaign with a 36-1 record. His 36 victories are good for ninth place on Northwestern’s single-season wins list. His string of 42 consecutive victories is a Northwestern record.

Northwestern finished 13th in the tournament’s team race with 48.5 points.

“Jake had a great year,” head coach Tim Cysewski said. “He wrestled well at the NCAA Champion-ships. He came out aggressively against Askren, and that put him in positions that he normally comes out on top of. He’ll learn from this, get better and come back looking for the national championship next season. His best is yet to come.”

The match between Herbert and Askren was one of the most anticipated bouts of the year. Both wrestlers entered the match with undefeated records and had been ranked No. 1 and No. 2, respectively, throughout the year.

Herbert, a sophomore, has compiled an 83-4 record over his first two full seasons.

The Wildcats finished tied with Iowa State for 13th in the team race with 48.5 points. Oklahoma State won its fifth-straight national title with 122.5 points.

Topics: Campus Life, People