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Thursday October 23, 2008No. 4 Gator Women Defeat LSU, 185-104

Baton Rouge, La.

Two broken LSU Natatorium records by junior Gemma Spofforth (West Sussex, England) and two event victories by freshman Teresa Crippen (Conshohocken, Pa.) highlighted the 185-104 Florida victory over the LSU Tigers Thursday. The No. 4 Gators swept all events of the meet as they defeated the Tigers for the 12th-straight time to move to 2-1 overall (1-0 SEC) on the young season.


“We swam very well today,” head coach Gregg Troy said. “We won every event of the meet, and notably, freshman Teresa Crippen won two events and Gemma Spofforth won both backstroke events, which were both new pool records.”


In addition to establishing LSU Natatorium records, Spofforth’s 100 and 200-yard backstroke finishes were both NCAA B provisional qualifying marks. Spofforth surpassed the 100-yard back NCAA B standard (55.13) with her 53.84 victory, and her first-place finish in the 200-yard back (1:57.26) topped the 1:57.90 provisional qualifying mark.


Crippen captured the 1,000-yard free title with her 10:00.79 mark, teaming up with fellow freshmen Kirsten Smith (Cary, N.C.) (10:11.85) and Natalie Smith (Gainesville, Fla.) (10:16.85) to sweep first, second and third in the event.


The freshmen Gators struck again in the 500-yard free, claiming first, second and third, with the victory from Shara Stafford (Topeka, Kan.), followed by both Kirsten Smith (4:58.73) and Natalie Smith (4:59.49) in second and third.


Crippen’s second event victory came in the 200-yard IM after clocking a 2:01.46, while junior Stephanie Proud (Durham, England) (2:03.02) and freshmen Lily Ramirez (Gainesville, Fla.) and Angelina Ballatore (Gainesville, Fla.) finished second, fifth and sixth.


Proud led the charge for Florida in the 200-yard free as the four Gator 200 free swimmers finished first through fourth, including Proud (first), senior Laurabeth Guenthner (Wellington, Fla.) (second), junior Kristen Beales (Arlington, Va.) (third) and freshman Sarah Bateman (Orlando, Fla.) (fourth).


Bateman walked away with an event victory of her own, claiming the 100-yard free (50.59), while fellow freshman Lindsay Rogers (Fishers, Ind.) continued the victory trend for the newcomers with a first-place finish in the 100-yard breast (1:04.84). Crippen also contributed in the 100 breast with a fourth-place finish.


Beales led the field in the 200-yard breast (2:20.42) with a victory, while Ballatore (2:23.92), Rogers (2:24.20) and Guenthner (2:24.72) finished third, fourth and fifth, respectively.


Contributing behind Spofforth in the backstroke events, sophomore Rebekah Epley (Russelville, Ky.) and senior Kelsy Smith (Cary, N.C.) finished third (56.13) and fifth (58.10), respectively. In the 200 back, Epley secured another third-place finish, while junior Sarah Peterson (Franklin, Tenn.) and freshman Blair Collins (Sarasota, Fla.) placed fourth and seventh.


Sophomore Julianne Lago (Miami, Fla.) won both butterfly events for the Gators, tapping in at 54.56 in the 100 fly and clocking a 2:00.16 for the win in the 200-yard event. Junior Liz Kemp (Potomac, Md.), senior Lindsay Woodward (Assonet, Mass.) and Ballatore provided depth in the 200-yard fly with second, fourth and sixth, while Epley, junior Stephanie Napier (Chattanooga, Tenn.) and Woodward finished third, fourth and eighth in the 100-yard fly.


Napier earlier walked away with the 50-yard free event title (23.24). Stafford (23.54), Ramirez (23.79) and Peterson (24.63) backed her up with second, third and seventh.


On the diving front, sophomore Monica Dodson (Franklin, Ind.) captured the one-meter title (264.45) and finished second in the three-meter competition (271.73), while senior Jeana Bartell (Boca Raton, Fla.) was the three-meter winner (277.95) after placing second on the one-meter springboard (258.10). Freshman Kaylee Doback (Brandon, Fla.) saw her collegiate debut for the Gators, finishing third in the one-meter competition (227.25) and fourth on the three-meter board (251.48).


Florida captured both the 200-yard medley and 200-yard free relay titles after Spofforth, Rogers, Stafford and Napier clocked a 1:43.16 in the 200-yard medley relay and Stafford, Napier, Spofforth and Bateman finished the 200-yard free relay in 1:33.10.


The Gators return to action Oct. 30 at 2 p.m. when they host SEC rival Georgia in the home-opener at the O’Connell Center.


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