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Wednesday February 18, 2009SEC & UF Records Fall As Gators Conclude Day One at 2009 SEC Championships

Auburn, Ala.

One SEC record, one pool record and two UF records fell Wednesday as the Gators completed day one of the 2009 SEC Swimming and Diving Championships in Auburn. After day one, the No. 5 Lady Gators lead the competition in first place with 116 points. Auburn (88), Tennessee (76), Alabama (75) and Georgia (73) round out the top-five, respectively. In men’s swimming action, Florida sits in third place (87 points) behind Auburn (118) and Tennessee (110), who round out the first and second-place spots.

 

“All of our relays swam really well tonight and I’m very pleased with the first day of racing,” head coach Gregg Troy said. “We had a number of school records and NCAA cuts, which was good. We would have liked to have more of an edge in the 800 free relays, but overall, we had a very good day. In addition to our swimming, our divers did very well today.”

 

In the most dominating swim of the night, the Lady Gator 200-yard medley relay, composed of junior Gemma Spofforth (West Sussex, England), freshman Lindsay Rogers (Fishers, Ind.), sophomore Julianne Lago (Miami, Fla.) and junior Stephanie Napier (Chattanooga, Tenn.) defended Florida’s SEC title in the event and set a new SEC record after clocking a 1:36.22 finals performance. The mark was the fastest time in Florida history, was a new James E. Martin Aquatics Center pool record and also punched the Gators’ ticket to the NCAA championships in the relay after downing the automatic standard.

 

“We swam pretty well today,” Spofforth said. “We weren’t expecting to get an SEC record today, but we could not have asked for anything better. It feels pretty good. We’re expecting some more as we come in here with plenty of juniors, freshmen and sophomores, so we’re looking forward to another year of that.”

 

Three Florida women’s divers represented the Gators in finals of the three-meter springboard Wednesday night, as junior Kara Salamone (Hollywood, Fla.) entered finals holding the first-place spot. Salamone dove her way to Florida’s highest finish, a fifth-place, 346.75-point finish that marked a career-best score. Fellow teammates Whitney Stern (Safety Harbor, Fla.) and Monica Dodson (Franklin, Ind.) placed sixth (318.25) and seventh (304.05), respectively, as Stern eclipsed a career-best score.

 

On the men’s side, after a record-breaking morning when the UF men eclipsed a school record and an NCAA automatic qualifying time in a time trial of the 200-yard free relay (1:17.60), the Gators returned to finals action ready to compete. Freshman Anthony Lewark (Davie, Fla.) started the night off right with a career-best performance on the one-meter springboard to place fifth overall (364.25). Lewark’s mark fell just shy of the best six-dive one-meter score (369.22) in school history.

 

Following a career-best for Lewark, the Florida men’s 200-yard medley relay swam an NCAA automatic qualifying time (1:25.14) that finished third overall. Junior Omar Pinzon (Bogota, Colombia) swam a backstroke leg that led the competition, while junior Clark Burckle (Louisville, Ky.) kept the Gators ahead in the breast stroke leg. Senior Bradley Ally (Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.) maintained in the fly leg, and when junior Raul Martinez (Caguas, Puerto Rico) hit the water, both Auburn and Tennessee turned on the jets to edge out the Gators for first and second, respectively.

 

In 800-yard free relay action, Florida’s men gave Auburn a run for their money, leading the field through the first three legs under the watch of Shaune and Brett Fraser (George Town, Cayman Islands), senior Rex Tullius (Port Orange, Fla.) and sophomore Balazs Gercsak (Budapest, Hungary). In the final 25 yards, Auburn’s Tyler McGill pulled the Tigers ahead for the first-place finish, only edging out the Gators by .21 seconds as Auburn finished in 6:18.15 and Florida in 6:18.36. The time was the third-fastest in Gator history.

 

A trio of freshmen in Shara Stafford (Topeka, Kan), Teresa Crippen (Conshohocken, Pa.) and Melani Costa-Schmid (Palma de Mallona, Spain) and junior Stephanie Proud (Durham, England) cruised to a 7:02.44 in the 800-yard free relay, clocking the second-fastest time in UF history in the event. Stafford’s leadoff 200-yard free marked the fourth-fastest time in Gator history as day one of SEC competition closed at the James E. Martin Aquatics Center.

 

DAY ONE UF SWIMMING RESULTS

M / W

Event

Swimmers

Time

Place

Notes

M

200 FR – Time Trial

Bradley Ally, Brett Fraser, Roberto Gomez, Raul Martinez

1:17.60

n/a

time trial

*UF Record

*NCAA “A” cut

*Fourth-fastest time in nation

M

100 fly – Time Trial

Jeff Raymond

48.22

n/a

time trial

n/a

W

200 MR – Finals

Gemma Spofforth, Lindsay Rogers, Julianne Lago, Stephanie Napier

1:36.22

1st

*SEC Record

*UF Record

*Pool Record

*NCAA “A” cut

M

200 MR – Finals

Omar Pinzon, Clark Burckle, Bradley Ally, Raul Martinez

1:25.14

3rd

*NCAA “A” cut

*Second-fastest time in UF history

W

800 FR – Finals

Shara Stafford, Stephanie Proud, Teresa Crippen, Melani Costa-Schmid

7:02.44

3rd

*Second-fastest time in UF history

*NCAA “B” cut

*Stafford’s 1:45.04 was fourth-fastest 200 free in school history

M

800 FR – Finals

Shaune Fraser, Brett Fraser, Rex Tullius, Balazs Gercsak

6:18.36

2nd

*NCAA “A” cut

*Third-fastest time in UF history

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

        

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

DAY ONE UF DIVING RESULTS

M / W

Event

Divers

Score

Place

Notes

M

1M

Anthony Lewark

323.55 prelims

364.25 finals

3rd  prelims

5th  finals

*Career-best score in finals

M

1M

Colin Bell

289.40 prelims

10thprelims

n/a

W

3M

Kara Salamone

335.85 prelims

346.75 finals

1st  prelims

5th finals

*Career-best score in finals

W

3M

Whitney Stern

316.90 prelims

318.25 finals

5th prelims

6th finals

*Career best prelims, reset career-best in finals

W

3M

Monica Dodson

304.70 prelims

304.05 finals

7th  prelims

7th finals

n/a

W

3M

Jeana Bartell

277.60 prelims

13th  prelims

n/a

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Day two of the SEC Championships will kick off Thursday with preliminaries beginning at 10 a.m. according to the following schedule:

 

THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 19, 2009

 

 

Prelims

 

 

10:00 am

Swimming Preliminaries (M/W)

 

 

500yd Freestyle

 

 

200yd Individual Medley

 

 

50yd Freestyle

 

12:30 pm-1:45 pm

Diving Preliminaries

 

 

Women's 1-Meter

 

2:30 pm-3:30 pm

Diving Preliminaries

 

 

Men's 3-Meter

 

 

 

 

Finals

 

 

5:30pm

Diving Final

 

 

Women's 1-Meter

 

6:00pm

Swimming Finals (M/W)

 

 

500yd Freestyle

 

 

200yd Individual Medley

 

 

50yd Freestyle

 

 

Men's 3-meter Diving Finals

 

 

200yd Freestyle Relay

 

 

Gator fans can track the meet live online by clicking HERE.

 

-UF-

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