Texas Swimming and Diving earns three January Big 12 Conference Awards
AUSTIN, Texas -- The Big 12 Conference announced on Wednesday its male and female Swimmers and Divers of the Month awards for January and three student-athletes from The University of Texas were recognized.
On the women's side, sophomore Elizabeth Tinnon (Bowling Green, Ky.) earned the first Big 12 Female Swimmer of the Month Award of her career, while senior Monica Maxwell (San Jose, Calif.) clinched her second straight Big 12 Female Diver of the Month Award. For the men, freshman Matthew McGinnis (Raleigh, N.C.) earned his second overall Big 12 Male Swimmer of the Month distinction.
Tinnon earns the monthly honor after winning all five 100- and 200-yard breaststroke events in which she competed during the month of January. Tinnon helped guide the Longhorns to a 146-113 win over Rice by placing first in the 100-yard breaststroke as well as the 200-yard medley relay. Two days later, she posted top finishes - each in NCAA automatic qualifying fashion - in the 100- (1:01.13) and 200-yard breaststroke (2:13.03) in a 165-133 loss to top-ranked Georgia. Tinnon closed out the month with first-place performances in the 100- and 200-yard breaststroke with times of 1:02.40 and 2:13.12, respectively, against No. 4 Arizona and No. 6 Southern Methodist, helping Texas defeat the Wildcats, 180.5-170.5 and the Mustangs, 204-148.
Maxwell, the conference's December Female Diver of the Month, placed third (252.37 points) in the one-meter dive and fifth (258.60) in the three-meter against No. 1 Georgia last month. The senior then clinched a second-place performance (472.20) in the three-meter versus No. 4 Arizona and No. 6 SMU while adding another third-place finish in the one-meter (274.27).
After winning his first conference monthly award in October, McGinnis performed exceptionally well in January, closing out the month by placing first in the 200-yard freestyle with an NCAA automatic qualifying time of 1:36.05 against No. 5 Arizona and SMU (1/28-29). During the meet, the freshman also added a first-place finish as a member of Texas' 200-yard freestyle relay (1:21.34) and added a runner-up performance in the 500-yard freestyle, clocking an NCAA provisional qualifying time of 4:24.47. Prior to January's final meet, McGinnis had posted runner-up performances in the 200- and 500-yard freestyles - each in NCAA provisional qualifying fashion - and swam a leg for the top Texas performing 400-yard freestyle relay team in a 138-96 loss at No. 2 Auburn on Jan. 13. McGinnis followed that performance by helping Texas defeat No. 16 Georgia (152.50-147.50) two days later by placing first in the 200-yard freestyle (1:38.58) and second in the 500-yard freestyle (4:28.10).
Next, Texas' men's and women's swimming and diving teams will face Texas A&M in the State Farm Lone Star Showdown. UT's fourth-ranked women's squad will travel to College Station, Texas, to face the Aggies on Friday, Feb. 4, while the ninth-ranked men's team is back in action on Saturday, Feb. 5, at the Lee and Joe Jamail Texas Swim Center where it will play host to the Aggies at 6 p.m.