Jack Conger

Men's swimming

Last weekend, sophomore Jack Conger dove into the national spotlight as he set a school record in the 200-yard butterfly. 

Conger’s time of 1:40.34 put him ahead of the previous record holder, freshman teammate Joseph Schooling, and simultaneously earned him the title of NCAA’s fourth best performer ever in the event. 

Conger kept his reaction simple.

“It was really nice,” he said.

Head coach Eddie Reese was more visibly excited.

“It was totally surprising to all of us,” Reese said. “He got out there real strong, and his last three 50’s were 25.9, 25.9, 26 flat.  You just don’t see that in butterfly.”

Conger, usually a backstroke specialist, appreciated being recognized for accomplishments in another field.

“The last few days leading up to the meet, we were really narrowed in on one or two events to focus on, and the 200 fly was that for me,” he said. “It’s not necessarily an off event, but it’s something besides backstroke, which is nice to do to get my mind off of something I enjoy and love doing so much.”

Conger will try to continue his success this weekend as the No. 1 ranked Longhorns face off against TCU at the Lee and Joe Jamail Texas Swimming Center in their Senior Day contest. 

The last time these two schools faced off was in 2013, when the Longhorns had a decisive 133-88 win in Fort Worth.

Men's tennis

Following their hard fought 4-2 victory against the SMU Mustangs on Saturday, the undefeated Texas men’s tennis team will face two ranked opponents this weekend.

Friday, the No. 62 Washington Huskies are coming to Austin, and Sunday, the Longhorns will face off against the No. 75 Rice Owls at the Weller Indoor Tennis Center. 

The Huskies, the tougher of the two matchups, are currently undefeated with three consecutive shutout victories. Meanwhile, the Owls are recovering from three straight losses, two of which came against unranked opponents Old Dominion and Mississippi State. 

The Longhorns come into the weekend on the back of very strong singles play, especially from senior All-Americans Søren Hess-Olesen and Lloyd Glasspool. Texas boasts one of the most experienced rosters in the Big 12, with five seniors and seven upperclassmen in all.

However, the Longhorns’ toughest test this season will come in Chicago at the ITA National Indoor Championship next weekend. If Texas can win both matches to sweep the weekend, it looks to continue its strong momentum heading into the ITA contest on Feb. 13.

Track and field

Coming off the heels of a strong weekend, Texas’ track and field will split up once again this weekend.

The Longhorns’ distance runners will travel to South Bend, Indiana, for the Meyo Invitational at Notre Dame. The meet, known for attracting some of the top talent in the country, will provide a mid-season test for Texas.

Meanwhile, the rest of Texas’ team will head out west to the New Mexico Collegiate Classic in Albuquerque, New Mexico. 

In the sprints, junior and Bowerman hopeful Courtney Okolo will be running her first 400 meters of the year, looking to gear up for the outdoor season.

This weekend also provides junior Kaitlin Petrillose, who joins Okolo on the Bowerman preseason watch list, another stepping stone on her quest to once again gain recognition as the NCAA Indoor Pole Vault champion. The Albuquerque Convention Center, home to the New Mexico Collegiate Classic, has provided four of the top-20 marks for pole vault this season, giving Petrillose an opportunity at setting her season-high mark.

Junior Ryan Crouser, No. 1 shot-putter in the world, also looks to continue his success this weekend coming off a world-leading mark of 20.95 meters (68–9.00) at the UW Invitational. 

Texas currently ranks No. 11 in the country on the men’s side and No. 7 on the women’s.

Women's swimming and diving

No. 6 ranked Texas women’s swimming and diving team will host TCU Friday in its final meet until the Big 12 Championships at the end of the month.

All-American sophomore swimmer Madisyn Cox will look to continue her stellar 2015, coming off a three-win outing in a dual-meet against Arizona and SMU last week. Cox’s accomplishments were enough to claim honors as the Big 12 Conference’s Swimmer of the Week, her first such recognition as a Longhorn.

Senior swimmer Gretchen Jaques expects to continue her success as the nation’s No. 2 swimmer in the 100-yard breaststroke.

In the diving events, platform diving duo senior Emma Ivory-Ganja and sophomore Murphy Bromberg hope to build on their performance from the dual meet last week, where they placed first and second, respectively.

Today’s home meet will serve as Senior Day for Texas, and the Longhorns will honor eight graduating seniors. 

The meet begins at 4 p.m. at the Lee and Joe Jamail Texas Swimming Center.

Sophomore Matt Ellis led the Longhorns in the 100 freestyle Saturday, finishing at 43.03 good for runner-up. Ellis' finish helped propel the Longhorns to their 35th consecutive Big 12 Championship, a title no other team has held in Big 12 history. 

Photo Credit: Andrea Kurth | Daily Texan Staff

No. 8 Texas won its 35th consecutive conference championship with 1,071 points this weekend at the Lee and Joe Jamail Texas Swimming Center. In addition to finishing first, Texas dominated the competition with six event wins and several NCAA-qualifying times.

Even though the men’s team has won the Big 12 title every year since the championship was founded in 1996, head coach Eddie Reese said winning doesn’t gets old.

“You get a new group, and you send your most experienced group,” Reese said. “If you ever forget to do the simple things then you have to stay on that.”

Saturday’s finals kicked off with men’s platform diving. Freshman diver Mark Anderson opened the night well over 100 points ahead of competitors. Anderson said mental imagery helped him prepare.

“[Imagining actions outside the water] definitely helped,” Anderson said. “I felt like when I got back in, I didn’t worry as much because I had it played out in my head.”

After freshman swimmer Jack Conger claimed the 100 butterfly in an NCAA automatic cut 45.56, Conger notched his second victory and automatic berth with a 1:40.56 finish in the 200 backstroke. The success merited Conger recognition as the Men’s Newcomer of the Meet.

“It’s not about the time right now — it’s about placing and doing your part of the team,” Conger said. “The NCAAs are on our mind, you know. I hope I can get up there a few more times. We’ll see.” 

Longhorn Big 12 title winners of the weekend include freshman Will Licon for his performance in the 200 breaststroke, sophomore Sam Lewis for the 1,650 freestyle and sophomore breaststroke swimmer Imri Ganiel for the 100 breaststroke. Junior breaststroke swimmer Matt Korman finished with the event’s fastest 100 breaststroke time in the consolation final at 53.35. As Texas finished the night swimming the 400 freestyle relay with an NCAA qualifying cut, Reese applauded his team’s efforts.

“We were a little low on our enthusiasm,” Reese said. “But we got it together last night and were a lot better this morning. Tonight we were as good as I could have hoped.”

The NCAA Championships will be held March 27–29 in Austin.

Men's swimming and diving

Fourth-ranked Texas traveled to Bloomington, Ind. on Friday and split wins against Indiana and Michigan for the second year in a row. 

The Longhorns cruised past the ninth-ranked Hoosiers with a 108-point victory, but fell short against No. 1 Michigan with a score of 166-134.

Texas began the meet strong with a one-two finish in the one-meter diving event. In another strong performance, freshman Michael Hixon claimed the event with 373.25 points while freshman Mark Anderson secured second.

Freshman Jack Conger took home first in all the backstroke events. Conger started by taking the 100-yard backstroke in 48.36 before winning the 200-yard distance in 1:45.13. Conger would then go on to capture his third win of the night in the 100-yard butterfly. Texas also saw great performances from junior Clay Youngquist, who notched wins in the 100 and 200-yard freestyle.

The Longhorn distance swimmers were headlined by sophomore Sam Lewis. Lewis put together a strong swim in the 1,000 and finished in 9:09.92.

The Longhorns will resume the regular season Nov. 8 when they take on Virginia, Penn State and West Virginia in Charlottesville, Va.

Women's swimming and diving

Texas looked dominant in its wins against Indiana and Michigan in a double-dual meet Friday, beating the latter by a 210-90 margin.

Longhorn divers swept the three-meter event to open competition, with junior Emma Ivory-Ganja picking up her second win in as many weeks.

Senior Samantha Tucker won the 200-yard freestyle in a time of 1:47.43, earning Texas’ first individual swimming victory of the day. 

Freshman Tasija Karosas finished first in the 200-yard backstroke for the third time this season, besting her two previous times with a mark of 1:56.74.

Texas concluded the meet with a win in the 400-yard freestyle relay, posting its best time of the season in 3:21.06.   

Up next the Longhorns will face Penn State, Virginia and West Virginia in a meet in Charlottesville, Va., on Nov. 8.  

Men's tennis

Texas juniors Adrien Berkowicz and Clement Homs played some of the best tennis of their young Longhorns careers this weekend, when they both advanced to the finals of their respective draws at the UT Invitational.

Berkowicz advanced to the finals in the A draw where he defeated Cutura (6-7, 6-3, 6-1) to claim the UT Invitational singles A draw title while Homs advanced to the finals of the B draw before falling to Texas Tech’s Jolan Cailleau in straight sets (6-3, 6-1).

Senior Sudanwa Sitaram, No. 93 in the nation, was also in the B draw falling to Cailleau (6-0, 6-3) in the quarterfinals. In the singles A draw, freshman George Goldhoff advanced to the semifinals before falling to Tyler Junior College’s Mate Cutura (7-6[7-4], 7-6[7-4]).

In doubles Cutura/James Martell defeated Goldhoff/Jacoby Lewis (8-3) in the round of 16. Berkowicz/Homs fell to TCU’s Andres Alfonzo/Trey Daniel (8-6) in the doubles quarterfinal.

Texas finishes fall tournament play 65-39 in singles.

Rowing

Both varsity and novice squads collected wins over the weekend at Austin Rowing Club’s 29th annual Head of the Colorado.

Texas’ varsity boat won the five-entry open eights race, sweeping the competition. The Longhorns crossed the finish line in 18:19.9, more than a minute and a half before second-place LSU Rowing Club.

Texas also claimed a win in the novice-2 eights race with a time of 21:25.2. The Longhorns finished ahead of Oklahoma by more than 30 seconds.

On Sunday, Texas’ varsity raced in New Jersey in the three-mile Princeton Chase. Two Longhorn boats competed in the 52-entry women’s varsity eight, finishing 27th and 28th. Texas’ A boat crossed the finish line with a time of 16:06.36 and Texas’ B boat just behind, with a time of 16:10.47.

The Longhorns also competed in the women’s varsity fours. Texas’ A boat finished 14th in 17:50.73 just behind Rutgers and Cornell. Following was Texas’ B boat in 27th place with a time of 18:32.37. 

Overall, women’s rowing found success in its regattas over the weekend. The teams prepare to wrap up their fall season this weekend in Tennessee at the Head of the Hooch.

Women's golf

The Alamo Invitational in San Antonio began Sunday for the women’s golf team, as it ended the first round in 14th place with a score of 7-over-par 295. 

Junior Bertine Strauss led the team and ended her day at 4-over-par 76. Freshman Julia Beck was in the No. 2 spot and finished with a score of 2-over–par 74. 

Sophomore Tezira Abe finished the best for Texas with an even-par 72, while sophomore Natalie Karcher finished with a score of 2-over-par 74. Abe ended tied for 27th, and then Beck and Karcher tied for 49th on the overall leader board. Oklahoma, ranked No. 5 in the NCAA before the event, took first place in Sunday’s round with a score of 10-under-par 350. 

Freshman Sara Scarlett, competing as an individual, and Anne Hakula in position five also participated in the event for Texas, ending the first round with scores of 10-over-par 82 and 3-over-par 75 respectively. 

The second round will begin Monday at the Briggs Ranch Golf Course.