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Junior Tobias Work notched two wins and an NCAA provisional cut on Saturday.

Saturday January 20, 2007Gators Leave Tuscaloosa With Pair Of Dual Wins

Tuscaloosa, AL

Junior Tobias Work notched two wins and an NCAA provisional cut on Saturday.

Junior Tobias Work (Falmouth, Mass.) and freshman Roland Rudolf (Budapest, Hungary) both picked up two individual event wins on Saturday to lead the 11th-ranked University of Florida men’s swimming and diving team (6-5, 3-2 Southeastern Conference) to a pair of dual wins. The Gators won seven total events en route to defeating No. 18 Alabama, 172-128, and getting the better of South Carolina, 190-109, and pulling one step closer to reaching the 500 all-time win mark in men’s dual meets. With the pair it recorded today, Florida owns 499 men’s dual-meet wins, and could reach 500 as early as Jan. 26, when the team hosts SEC rival Tennessee at the Stephen C. O’Connell Center.


“We came out and swam some good races today against two quality teams,” Florida head coach Gregg Troy said. “We were a little flat and didn’t swim as well we wanted to in the beginning, but we got the job done. It was a demanding weekend, and it was good for us in terms of what we’re going to see at the conference meet in a few weeks.”


Work earned his initial first-place finish of the afternoon in the meet’s first event, winning the 1,000 free with a time of 9:05.69. He also captured the 500 free with an NCAA provisional-qualifying performance of 4:24.82, marking his third B cut of the season in the event. On Friday, Work placed first in the 1,000 free and earned an NCAA provisional cut in the 500 free during UF’s showdown with No. 4 Auburn.


For the second time in as many days, Rudolf was at the forefront of the Gator attack, sweeping the backstroke events against the Crimson Tide and Gamecocks. He touched first in the 100 back with a time of 49.93 and one-upped himself in the 200 back by taking the win and posting an NCAA provisional qualifying standard (1:46.79). The national-meet cut was his fourth of the year in the 200 back, and his eighth overall NCAA-qualifying mark of the season. Against Auburn on Friday, he picked up first-place finishes and NCAA provisional cuts in both the 500 free and 200 back.


“Tobias and Roland swam really well for us today, without a doubt,” Troy said. “They really gave us a spark and pulled us through the meet. It helps the entire team when one or two individuals step up their performance because it puts a buzz in the air.”


Two of Rudolf’s classmates, freshmen Shaune Fraser (George Town, Cayman Islands) and Clark Burckle (Louisville, Ky.), also found their ways to the winner’s circle on Saturday. Fraser clocked an NCAA provisional-qualifying time of 1:46.00 to win the 200 fly by more than three seconds, while Burckle notched his first career win in the 400 individual medley in a career-best clip of 3:54.07. The squad of Rudolf, sophomore Lucas Salatta (Sao Paulo, Brazil), Fraser and junior Tim Hughes (Winter Park, Fla.) closed the meet out on a high note for the Gators, winning the 400 FR with a time of 3:02.77.


Hughes posted a runner-up finish in the 200 free for UF with a career-best time of 1:40.89, while sophomore Rex Tullius (Port Orange, Fla.) also claimed second-place honors in the 100 back (50.59). Tullius later swam to a second-place finish in the 200 back with a time of 1:49.23. Junior Daniel Penniman (Pensacola, Fla.) broke the 21-second barrier in the 50 free for the third time in the Gators’ last four dual meets, taking second in the event with a time of 20.96.


“As a team, we look pretty good heading into the final stages of preparation for the SEC Championships,” Troy said. “Our lineup is beginning to firm up, and people are starting to really fall into place for us. The next few weeks will be an exciting time when we see what we’re going to have in Lexington.”


The Gators are now 11-2 away from home in SEC dual-meet competition over the last three seasons, including wins over LSU, Alabama and South Carolina this season. Florida now owns a 25-11 advantage in the all-time series with Alabama, and a 23-3 edge in the ledger with the Gamecocks.


UF will vie for its 500th all-time dual win on the men’s side when it takes on 13th-ranked Tennessee at the O’Connell Center on Friday at 7 p.m. EST. Florida will honor its seniors the following day when it hosts Florida Atlantic in its regular-season finale. Action is scheduled to commence at 1 p.m. EST on Saturday.


Men’s Results (Florida 172, Alabama 128; Florida 190, South Carolina 109)





400 MR

Perry, Polyakov, Mihalca, Tsagkarakis (Alabama)


1,000 Free

Tobias Work (Florida)


200 Free

Alin Mihalca (Alabama)


100 Back

Roland Rudolf (Florida)


100 Breast

Vlad Polyakov (Alabama)


200 Fly

Shaune Fraser (Florida)


50 Free

Apostolis Tsagkarakis (Alabama)


1M Dive

David Ovelson (South Carolina)


100 Free

Apostolis Tsagkarakis (Alabama)


200 Back

Roland Rudolf (Florida)


200 Breast

Vlad Polyakov (Alabama)


500 Free

Tobias Work (Florida)


100 Fly

Kurt Muller (South Carolina)


3M Dive

David Ovelson (South Carolina)


400 IM

Clark Burckle (Florida)


400 FR

Rudolf, Salatta, Fraser, T. Hughes (Florida)





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