Cooper, Livingston lead Longhorns

Updated: March 28, 2010, 11:34 PM ET
Associated Press

COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Matt Cooper and Drew Livingston provided Texas enough points in the platform diving competition for the Longhorns to win the team title at the NCAA men's swimming and diving championships on Sunday.

Cooper finished third and Livingston seventh for a total of 28 points, giving Texas 500 to 469½ for California, which won the 400-yard freestyle over the Longhorns in the final event.

"If you're going to win an NCAA championship you've got to have real good people that make great efforts on days they don't want to, when they're not feeling well," coach Eddie Reese said. "This was one of our best last days ever."

Arizona (387) was third and Stanford (369) fourth.

It was the first championship for Texas since the Longhorns won three straight from 2000-03.

"The last thing you want to do is let your team down because you've thrown up a couple of times," Longhorns swimmer Ricky Berens said. "You've trained all year for this. It doesn't matter how you feel. You're doing it for Texas. You're doing it for your teammates."

Only California among the top four did not have any athletes affected by a gastrointestinal illness that delayed the start of the three-day meet by 24 hours and briefly sent 18 athletes and Reese to the hospital.

"Getting pushed back another day definitely helped," Texas swimmer Ricky Berens said.

California's Chad La Tourette won the 1,650-yard freestyle in 14 minutes, 42.87 seconds and Nathan Adrian took the 100 free in 41.50. The Golden Bears' 400 free relay also finished first.

"We came up a little bit short but we'll be back next year," California swimmer said Josh Daniels said.

Arizona's Cory Chitwood (200 backstroke in 1:39.29) and Clark Burckle (200 breaststroke in 1:53.19) were also winners.

Florida's Shaune Fraser defended his title in the 200 butterfly (1:41.45) after winner Mark Dylla of Georgia was disqualified for a one-hand touch on a turn. Duke's Nick McCrory won the platform diving.

Host Ohio State finished ninth with 136½ points for its first top 10 finish since 1975. The Buckeyes and Michigan have the most NCAA titles (11), but the Buckeyes' last came in 1962.


Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press

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