Texas' Townley Haas won his first Big 12 title in the 500-yard freestyle Thursday night. He's the best collegiate swimmer at the mid-distance free style. (Anthony Souffle/Minneapolis Star Tribune/TNS)

BEVO BEAT Swimming & Diving

Townley Haas sets NCAA and American records in the 200-yard freestyle

Posted March 23rd, 2018

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Townley Haas won a national title and set NCAA and American records in the process at the NCAA Championships in Minneapolis, Minn., on Friday.

Haas, a junior All-American, reclaimed his 200-yard freestyle record by finishing the event final in 1 minute, 29.50 seconds.

On Wednesday, Blake Pieroni of Indiana broke the record Haas had held for two years in the 800 freestyle relay. Prieroni finished his leg of the race in 1:29.63.

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Haas didn’t let that record last for long as he won the 200 freestyle national title for the third straight year. He did so going under the 1:30 mark for the first time.

“It means everything,” said Haas. “I wanted to go under 1:30 since right after my freshman year. Blake Pieroni did it first and that hit me a little hard, but obviously it was a great swim on his part. It was incredible. Just to be able to come back two days later and have a better swim with better turns, it meant everything. I felt better in the water.”

That makes five career individual titles for Haas, three in the 200 freestyle and two 500 freestyle championships. If he wins the 200 freestyle next year, he’ll be the first man to do so in four straight years.

The Longhorns moved up to second place as a result of Friday’s action. They have 306 points and trail Indiana by 19. California is third with 291.5 points with one more day to go.

Joseph Schooling took fourth place in the 100 butterfly final with a time of 44.68. Florida’s Caeleb Dressel won the event in 42.80, setting a new record as the first person to swim the race in under 43 seconds.

John Shebat contributed a second-place finish in the 100 backstroke final for the second year in a row. He finished in 44.59. Austin Katz wasn’t far behind to take fourth in 44.99.

Jordan Windle and Grayson Campbell took fifth and seventh in the 3-meter diving final. Windle scored 441.70 points while Campbell recorded 416.90.

Jonathan Roberts took seventh in the 400 individual medley with a time of 3:40.30.

Jeff Newkirk won the consolation final of the 200 freestyle with a time of 1:33.15. Sam Pomajevich took fourth in 1:33.21.

Texas closed with a fifth-place finish in the 200 medley relay. Shebat, Schooling, Tate Jackson and Brett Ringgold teamed up to finish in 1:23.21.

The final day of competition begins at 10 a.m. on Saturday. Finals are set to begin at 6 p.m.

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