March 21, 1998
MINNEAPOLIS - Stanford University, with 422 points, captured the 1998 NCAA Women's Swimming & Diving Championships, becoming the first team in NCAA history to win eight national titles. Stanford, which entered the meet tied with Texas with seven crowns, outdistanced Pac-10 rival Arizona (378) and Georgia (368) for the victory. Cardinal head coach Richard Quick won his 12th national title and his seventh with Stanford. He previously directed Texas to five of its seven national titles.
"Never. It never gets old (winning a national title)," said Quick. "People ask from time to time if it gets old, but it doesn't. It's never the same because the makeup of each team, each year, is different. The chemistry is different, the athletes are different. It never gets old. When you enter a contest, it's fun to be on the winning end. (Catherine) Fox and (Misty) Hyman set this team apart. They're excellent athletes. We had a great team effort throughout our lineup. From the divers to everyone else, they each gave a tremendous effort and performed exceptionally. Our team also has great support from our athletic department. (Stanford) Athletic Director Ted Leland and the entire support staff is fantastic. It's a wonderful place to work."
Stanford freshman sensation Misty Hyman (Phoenix, AZ/Shadow Mtn. HS), who won five NCAA titles in her inaugural NCAA meet, was honored as the NCAA Swimmer-of-the-Year. She becomes the third Cardinal to achieve the award, joining Summer Sanders (1991 and '92) and Janet Evans (1990). Hyman, which had helped lead the 200 and 400 medley relay teams to victory while also setting an NCAA record en route to the 100 butterfly title, added two more titles on the final day, pulling off an amazing double. She won the second event of the day - the 200 backstroke - with a time of 1:53.12, the second fastest time in NCAA history. Just three races later, Hyman won the 200 butterfly in a time of 1:55.70, setting a new Minnesota pool record.
"I think I was pleasantly surprised (about her success)," said Hyman. "I felt good coming into this meet. I had a good Pac-10 meet and I was excited for my first NCAA's, but I don't think I expected anything like this. I knew that it was going to be something special when I stepped on the deck the first day - the excitement in the air about the NCAA's - but I didn't know how good at the time.
"Winning the team title was very exciting. While we all came in with a job to do individually. I think as a team we all really came together. It was very exciting. I am also very, very honored by being named the NCAA Swimmer-of-the-year."
Also turning in top performances on the final day was sophomore Catherin Fox (Shawnee Mission, KS/Bishop Miege HS), who finished sixth in the 100 freestyle; junior Elin Austevoll (Os, Norway/Os Gymnas), who finished second in the 200 breaststroke with a career-best 2:11.04; freshman Kim Powers (Crestview Hills, KY/Dixie Heights HS), who finished sixth in platform diving with season-high 590.75; and the 400 freestyle relay team - consisting of Siobhan Cropper, Gabrielle Rose, Lindsay Gassner and Fox - which finished second in a school season-best time of 3:16.99.
Stanford tallied 39 All-America honors (by 12 individuals) in the meet, led by Hyman and Fox with seven apiece.