Jacobo Sets School Record, Posts NCAA Auto Qualifier

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AUSTIN -- Senior Alejandro Jacobo set a school record and punched his ticket to the NCAA Championships to highlight Texas A&M’s third day at the 2008 Big 12 Swimming and Diving Championships at the Jamail Swim Center on the University of Texas campus.

Already the school record-holder in the 200-yard breaststroke, Jacobo lopped a half-second off his previous best in the 100 breast to finish second with a time of 53.45. Jacobo’s NCAA “A” cut time broke the old school record of 53.84 set by his older brother, Alfredo, in 2005.

“Last year Alejandro missed the NCAA meet by one spot, and he was determined to make sure there were no questions this year,” Aggie head coach Jay Holmes said. “He continued to do what he’s done all year and that is swim fast. I think this was a breakthrough swim for him because he’s not feeling well, but he still swam fast.”

Also in the 100 breast “A” final, senior Luke Chambless grabbed third in a lifetime best 54.65, which pushes him to No. 3 on the Aggies’ top 10 list in the race, and freshman Bryan Snowden took sixth in 56.91.

The Aggies also shined in the 200-yard freestyle relay with a runner-up finish in a season-best and NCAA “B” cut time of 1:18.70. The foursome of Ozzie Gardner, Casey Strange, Brad Raiford and Luke Chambless all posted sub-20-second splits with Strange leading the way with a 19.28 second leg.

“That was a great team effort by the free relay, and I think that time is fast enough to get to the NCAA meet,” Holmes said. “I was proud of the way our guys got up on the blocks and went toe to toe with the Longhorns.

A&M scored big points in the 100 backstroke with five swimmers in the “A” final. Nikita Denisyako led the Aggie parade with a third-place finish in a “B” cut time of 47.90, which ranks No. 3 on A&M’s top 10 list in the race. He was trailed by Kyle Holland (4th, 48.90, No. 6 in school history), Shawn Clarke (6th, 50.53), Gardner and Jason Bergstrom.

Other Aggies reaching “A” finals were Tyler Welch (5th, 3:59.40) and Tim Sablick (6th, 4:00.73) in the 400 IM, and Boris Loncaric in the 100 fly (7th, 48,62).