Saturday January 16, 2010No. 7 Gators Swim Past FAU Owls, 163-122
UF’s Sebastien Rousseau (Cape Town, South Africa) captured an NCAA provisional mark in the men’s 200-yard butterfly (1:47.97) in his first meet and first individual race donning the Orange and Blue to lead the Florida men to their seventh dual win of the season. Rousseau, 2008 Olympian for South Africa, helped lead the Gators (7-0, 2-0 SEC) to a 159-118 win over in-state rival FAU Saturday at the Stephen C. O’Connell Center.
Under the leadership of senior Liz Kemp (Potomac, Md.), who captured the 1,000-yard free (10:05.29) title, several younger Gators stepped it up for UF (8-2, 2-1 SEC) to defeat the Owls, 163-122, in women’s swimming and diving action. Freshman Corinne Showalter (Sarasota, Fla.) walked away with a victory in the 200-yard free (1:50.32), while sophomore Anna-Liisa Pold (San Diego, Calif.) claimed an individual win in the 100-yard backstroke (57.22) to give UF momentum the first half of the dual.
Combined, the Gators went on to win 31 of the 32 possible events, including all four relays, the men with 15 of 16 and the women taking all 16 event titles. The Florida women’s 200-yard free relay established its first NCAA provisional mark of the season in the race with a 1:31.74 in the final event of the meet (Stafford, Spofforth, Napier, Bateman).
FAU’s Alex Rodriguez won the men’s 200-yard breast in 2:08.37 to claim the Owls’ one event victory versus the Gators.
With a season-best 57.95, the Gators saw a new leader in the men’s 100-yard breast event when junior Manuel Rabelo (Villa Clara, Cuba) touched in first. On the women’s side, sophomore Maida Turnadzic (Cape Coral, Fla.) represented with a win in the 200-yard butterfly, clocking a 2:02.92, just shy of her season-best mark.
Florida’s two women’s breaststroke events showed promising winners, with sophomore Sarah Bateman (Orlando, Fla.) and freshman Sarra Lajnef (Tunis, Tunisia) claiming the 100 and 200 breast events, respectively, with times of 1:04.08 and 2:18.65.
In the sprint 50 freestyle, senior Stephanie Napier (Chattanooga, Tenn.) and junior Matt Norton (Port Orange, Fla.) both took first for the Gators, Napier in 23.56 and Norton in 20.66, a season-best mark
At the one-meter diving break, the Gators continued to dominate, with sophomore Colin Bell (Coral Springs, Fla.), junior Grayson Patten (West Palm Beach, Fla.) and junior Jon Speed (Jupiter, Fla.) sweeping first through third to rack up 16 points for UF, while the women performed equally as well on the one-meter springboard. Sophomore Kaylee Doback (Brandon, Fla.) and junior Monica Dodson (Franklin, Ind.) took first and second in the event, contributing 13 points to UF’s overall score.
Freshman Jamie Bohunicky (Gainesville, Fla.) gave Florida its second NCAA provisional mark of the afternoon, the first and only for the women, as she took the 100-yard free in 50.20 and senior backstroker Roland Rudolf (Budapest, Hungary) clocked a season-best time of 1:45.32 in the men’s 200-yard back, also an NCAA mark.
Despite exhibition scoring for the remainder of the meet after the breaststroke events, Florida won both the women’s and men’s 500-yard free races with stellar swims by Eva Lehtonen (Rochester Hills, Mich.) (4:56.20) and Logan Storie (Corvallis, Ore.) (4:32.05), as well as the 100-yard butterfly events with first-place performances by sophomore Shara Stafford (Topeka, Kan.) (54.95) and junior Mike Yuan (Winter Springs, Fla.) (50.08). Yuan’s swim marked a season-best, surpassing his 50.29 set at the Georgia Invitational the first week in December. Storie additionally placed first in the 200 free for UF (1:39.84).
Men’s sophomore Jeff Raymond (Davie, Fla.) won the 1,000-yard free (9:21.27) and returned to place second in the 500-yard free behind Storie, while Rousseau claimed the third-place spot in the Gator sweep in the 500 free.
During the three-meter diving break, Florida crashed the boards with success yet again, as senior Kara Salamone (Cooper City, Fla.) and Doback placed first and second. In the men’s competition, Bell, Speed and Patten finished first through third.
Florida will wrap up the dual meet home season Friday, Jan. 22, when it plays host to SEC rival Auburn University. The meet will kick off at 4 p.m. (ET) in the O’Dome as the Gators bid farewell to one of the best senior classes in UF swimming and diving history. Admission to the event is free.