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Sunday November 22, 2009Florida Finishes Second at Georgia Tech Invitational

Atlanta, Ga.

Following a three-day push at the 2009 Georgia Tech Invitational, the top-five University of Florida menís and womenís swimming and diving teams both finished second to the squads from Florida State at the Georgia Tech Aquatic Center on the final day of competition Sunday.

With a dual meet slated between the two Florida schools at the Stephen C. OíConnell Center Tuesday, Nov. 24, FSU topped the UF women with 977.5 points to the Gatorsí second-place 933.5 points in Atlanta. Clemson (471), Georgia Tech (392.5), NC State (338), Gardner-Webb (197.5), FAU (154), FIU (117) and Auburn (42) rounded out the final standings in the womenís portion of the invitational.

On the menís side, the Seminoles took the title with 1,055 points, while Florida came in second with 787. Clemson (486), Georgia Tech (453), NC State (340), FAU (164), Gardner-Webb (141) and Auburn (61) completed the menís team finishers.

The Florida menís 400-yard freestyle relay claimed the top spot in the final event of the evening (2:56.63) of competition. Composed of Brett Fraser (George Town, Cayman Islands), Shaune Fraser (George Town, Cayman Islands), Conor Dwyer (Winnetka, Ill.) and Roberto Gomez (Weston, Fla.), the quartet finished off a tough three-day battle with a strong race.

S. Fraser, the NCAA record holder in the 200-yard fly, claimed the top spot in the event Sunday (1:45.80), and with help from sophomore Jose Crescimbeni (Holiday, Fla.) (1:49.72) and junior Balazs Gercsak (Budapest, Hungary), the Gators claimed 42 points in the event.

Junior Mike Joyce (Voorhees, N.J.) was UFís top finisher in the 200-yard breast (2:07.39), with an 11th-place finish in the consolation final, while Dwyer, Gomez and senior Raul Martinez (Caguas, Puerto Rico) picked up the points for the Orange and Blue in the 100-yard free with third, fourth and 16th, respectively.

B. Fraser clocked a 1:50.86 in finals of the 200-yard back, good for seventh, while Floridaís distance freestyle crew dominated the field in the mile, sweeping second through sixth and also taking the eighth-place spot. Senior Ryan Crete (Sarasota, Fla.) (15:35.73), junior Logan Storie (Corvallis, Ore.) (15:35.90), sophomore Jeff Raymond (Davie, Fla.) (15:47.00), junior Joey Pedraza (Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.) (15:53.39) and freshman Jason Taylor (Plant City, Fla.) (15:53.39) took the second, third, fourth, fifth and sixth place marks, while junior Balazs Gercsak (Budapest, Hungary) placed eighth (16:01.08).

In the menís platform, sophomores Anthony Lewark (Davie, Fla.) and Colin Bell (Coral Springs, Fla.) placed eighth (272.15) and 11th (244.10) and junior Grayson Patten (West Palm Beach, Fla.) claimed 13th (203.90).

After a first-place finish in the 200-yard free Saturday, sophomore Shara Stafford (Topeka, Kan.) rallied for the Gators in the 100 free with an NCAA provisional mark victory (49.76), while senior Liz Kemp (Potomac, Md.) finished third (50.63). Floridaís distance free corps consisted of sophomore Angelina Ballatore (Gainesville, Fla.) and freshman Eva Lehtonen (Rochester Hills, Mich.), who both clocked 16:49.60 to tie for fourth place in the 1650-yard free.

Teresa Crippen (Conshohocken, Pa.), Gemma Spofforth (West Sussex, England) and Lily Ramirez (Gainesville, Fla.) proved to be a triple threat in the 200-yard back in second, third and fourth, respectively, with times of 1:57.61, 1:57.87 and 2:00.25. Sophomores Anna-Liisa Pold (San Diego, Calif.) and Kirsten Smith (Cary, N.C.) and freshman Corinne Showalter (Sarasota, Fla.) stacked the depth in the consolation final in 11th (2:00.76), 12th (2:02.47) and 14th (2:03.85).

Freshman Sarra Lajnef (Tunis, Tunisia), Smith and sophomore Daniela Victoria (Plantation, Fla.) placed seventh, 10th and 11th in the womenís 200-yard breast, while a total of seven Gators dominated the 10-woman championship final in the 200-yard fly.

Sophomore Jemma Lowe (Hartlepool, England) claimed the top spot in 1:58.89, while Crippen rallied for second (1:59.63). Freshman Jamie Bohunicky (Gainesville, Fla.) took fourth (2:01.09), Pold (2:03.18), Showalter (2:04.38), Kemp (2:04.64) and Lehtonen (2:06.60) placed seventh through 10th.

Florida finished out competition in Atlanta with a second-place finish in the 400-yard free relay, clocking a 3:23.21, after being out-touched by the ladies from Florida State (3:21.82).

In diving action, senior Kara Salamone (Hollywood, Fla.) (298.95), junior Monica Dodson (Franklin, Ind.) (246.25) and sophomore Kaylee Doback (Brandon, Fla.) (196.20) placed first, third and eighth in the platform competition.

Both Florida squads will be back in action Tuesday when Florida State travels to Gainesville for the in-state rivalry. Diving is slated to begin at 1 p.m., while swimming competition commences at 5 p.m. from the OíDome.

-UF-

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