National Championship moments: 1991 Women's Swimming and Diving
Texas established itself as by far the nation's most dominant women's swimming program in the 1980s-- having won seven NCAA titles in the decade -- and the Longhorns found the early 1990s equally to their liking. After winning it all during the 1989-90 season, Texas looked equal to the task of repeating in 1990-91.
The season began on the campus of Texas A&M as the Longhorns headed to College Station for the Southwest Conference Relays.Texas took second place in the meet, falling one point behind Arkansas, who was in its last season in the Southwest Conference before moving on to the Southeastern Conference.UT immediately gathered momentum from its strong showing at the SWC Relays, as the Longhorns dominated Alabama less than a week later, defeating the Crimson Tide by a 181-94 count at UT's Lee and Joe Jamail Texas Swimming Center in Austin.
The first meet of the 1991 calendar year ended with a similar result when Texas topped perennial power Florida by a 126-114 count in Gainesville, Fla.Texas flexed its muscle a week later in Austin when it soundly defeated SMU, Michigan and Texas A&M in a quad meet.
Texas suffered its only dual-match defeat of the 1990-91 season on Feb. 8, 1991 when Stanford knocked off the Longhorns by a 158.5-141.5 count in Austin.UT regrouped the next day when it scored a 154-137 victory over Houston on Senior Day.
Texas readied itself for a strong postseason run with a dominant showing at the Southwest Conference Championships in Austin.Racking up 989.5 points in the three-day meet, the Longhorns captured their ninth consecutive Southwest Conference title, defeating its nearest competitor, SMU, by nearly 350 points. No fewer than five Longhorns-- Katy Arris (200 and 500 freestyle); Leigh Ann Fetter (50 and 100 freestyle); Amy Shaw (200 and 400 IM); Dorsey Tierney (100 and 200 breaststroke) and Jodi Wilson (100 and 200 backstroke)-- won multiple individual conference titles at the meet.UT also swept the 200, 400 and 800 freestyle relays as well as the 200- and 400-medley relays.
Texas entered the 1991 NCAA Championships having won six of the previous seven NCAA Championships after winning the 1990 NCAA title in Austin.The Longhorns put themselves in prime position to contend for the championship in Indianapolis after day one, when they led Stanford, 210-199. Texas' 200-freestyle relay quartet of Fetter, Julie Cooper, Dana Dutcher and Andrea Fisher entered the event as the favorite and delivered in the end, winning in 1:30.01.
Fetter, who represented Team USA three years earlier at the 1988 Summer Olympic Games in Seoul, South Korea, went on to capture the 50-yard freestyle in 22.13.The win marked her fourth consecutive victory in the 50-yard freestyle at the NCAA meet, making Fetter, then the American record holder in the 50-yard and 50-meter freestyle, only the third woman in NCAA history to win the same event four times.Cooper took fourth, while Fisher placed seventh and Dutcher took eighth.
Although the Longhorns managed two victories on day two, Stanford took a narrow 461-455 lead heading into the final day of competition.The Longhorns captured the 200-yard medley relay, as Beth Barr, Lydia Morrow, B.J. Bedford and Fetter clocked a season-best time of 1:40.63 to break Florida's streak of 51 consecutive victories in the event.Wilson collected her first NCAA individual title in the 100-yard backstroke, topping her teammate, Barr, by less than one-half of a second.
Texas added 16 points in the 100-yard breaststroke when Tierney took second, Morrow placed fourth and freshman Kristi Busico took sixth.The Longhorns garnered two more top-eight finishes from Arris and Julie Sommer in the 200 freestyle, while Bedford contributed a fifth-place finish in the 100-yard butterfly.UT finished day two with a third-place finish in the 800-yard freestyle relay.
Texas assured itself of a successful rally for the NCAA title by completing a tremendous qualifying session.Erika Hansen took fifth in the 1,650-yard freestyle, while Arris added a seventh-place showing.In the next event, the 200-yard backstroke,
Barr defeated two-time defending NCAA champion Kristine Linehan of Florida to give Texas extra momentum.The Longhorns took control when Fetter, the Broderick Award winner as the National Swimmer of the Year, defeated the world champion, Florida's Nicole Haislett, in the 100-yard freestyle.UT also picked up a fifth-place finish from Fisher and sixth- and 12th-place finishes from Cooper and Dutcher, respectively.
Hansen added to the Texas tally by taking second behind Stanford's Summer Sanders in the 200-yard butterfly. Sommer took fourth, while Shannon Halverstadt took 11th place.Tierney capped UT's individual victories with what was then a NCAA, meet and pool-record time of 2:11.54 in the 200-yard breaststroke.Busico placed fourth, while Morrow took fifth.Senior Kelly Jenkins added a fourth-place finish in the platform-diving event, and freshman Terri Seipel took seventh place.
UT wrapped up its national-title run with a victory in the 400-yard freestyle relay, as the Longhorn quartet of Cooper, Fisher, Dutcher and Fetter won in 3:17.05.
"I thought our team swam with a lot of class in this meet," said Schubert after the victory."They swam six good sessions and never lost confidence in themselves.The last day was the best I have ever seen out of any Texas team since I have been here."
The title marked the second NCAA Championship at Texas for Schubert, who now is the head coach and general manager of USA Swimming.
1991 NCAA Championship Results