Jensen, 400y Medley Relay Earn Finals Bid At NCAA Championships

March 15, 2007

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Senior Larsen Jensen qualified second for the final of the 500y free, senior Sean Sussex broke a 30-year record in the 50y free and USC's 400y medley relay earned a trip into the finals to kick off the Trojans' efforts at the 2007 NCAA Men's Swimming and Diving Championships at the University Aquatic Center in Minneapolis on Thursday (March 15).

Jensen, who won the Pac-10 title in the 500y free in February, is gunning for his NCAA crown in the event and took a step toward that with a 4:15.05 in prelims. It was second to only Stanford's Shaun Phillips' 4:14.82 morning swim. He won his only NCAA title in the 1650y free in 2005.

Senior Sean Sussex broke Joe Bottom's 1977 USC record in the 50y free - the oldest record in the Trojan swimming book - with a prelim sprint of 19.68. But in a fast field that saw an American record go down in one of the heats, Sussex's time placed him 20th overall.

To lead off the meet, Sussex, senior Sam Masson, junior Richard Gosper and junior Bryce Elser qualified for the consolation final of the 200y free relay with a school-record swim of 1:18.82. The previous record with 1:18.85, set in 1991.

Later, in the 400y medley relay, the Trojan quartet of seniors Viktor Bodrogi, Mihaly Flaskay, Masson and Sussex qualified for the final by taking seventh in prelims in 3:10.59.

Sophomore Vanni Mangoni became the fourth fastest Trojan ever in the 200y IM with his prelim swim of 1:46.35, but in a similarly fast field like the 50 free, he had to settle for 18th.

In other action, Gosper finished 30th in the 50y free in 19.98.

Finals begin at 7 p.m. (CST).

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