Friday October 29, 2010Florida Swimming & Diving Team Splits SEC and Road Opener vs. Georgia
The University of Florida men’s swimming and diving team opened up its road schedule by picking up its first victory of the 2010-11 season with a 170-130 triumph over Southeastern Conference rival Georgia, while the women’s team dropped a 180-120 decision to the Lady Bulldogs, Friday afternoon at the Gabrielsen Natatorium in Athens, Ga. The meet marked the SEC opener for both schools and the 10th consecutive SEC-opening win for the Gator men’s squad.
“Both men and the women mirrored each other in their meets, but each had different results,” head coach Gregg Troy said. “From an individual standpoint, Conor Dwyer (Winnetka, Ill.), Sarah Bateman (Orlando, Fla.) and Shara Stafford (Topeka, Kan.) all had great meets. Several of our young swimmers stepped up, which was encouraging to see. It was also great to have the men back from the Commonwealth Games, as they really contributed to the men’s side.”
Dwyer continued to build off his SEC Male Swimmer of the Week performance vs. Virginia, winning the men’s 200 (B-Cut time of 1:37.77), 500 (B-Cut time of 4:25.46) and 1,000-yard freestyle (9:00.48). The reigning 2010 NCAA and SEC Male Swimmer of the Year now owns the fastest times in the NCAA in all three events. The senior captain also helped the Gators win the 400 freestyle relay along with teammates Brett Fraser (George Town, Cayman Islands), Scott Sommer (Ocala, Fla.) and Logan Storie (Corvallis, Ore.). The relay time of 2:59.27 was a NCAA provisional mark and also became the fastest time in the country in the event. Also in the men’s 500 free was Florida sophomore Jason Taylor (Plant City, Fla.), who finished second in with a NCAA provisional mark with a time of 4:27.01, the third-quickest time in the country this season.
“It was fun to finish the intense four-week training cycle against a great SEC team like Georgia that will challenge us in the spring,” Dwyer said. “Coach Troy wanted to see how tough I was in an intense freestyle meet, so I was happy with my swims individually.”
Bateman, a junior All-American for the Gators, paced the way for the women’s squad, winning the 50 free with a NCAA provisional time for the third-straight meet as well as placing first in the 100 free (50.40). The Iceland Olympian’s time of 22.72 in the 50 free is the second-fastest time in the country. Bateman also picked up another NCAA provisional mark with a second-place finish in the 200-yard medley relay (1:42.49), joining teammate’s freshman Alana Pazevic (Mill Creek, Wash.), junior Daniela Victoria (Plantation, Fla.) and freshman Elizabeth Beisel (North Kingstown, R.I.).
“It was a really exciting meet,” Bateman said. “We may have fallen short, but as a whole we were able to see the areas we must improve in so that we can reach our goals this spring. I just tried to race my best and score as many points as possible for my team.”
Beisel, who was named SEC Female Swimmer of the Week for her performances in the Virginia dual-meet victory, also won two events. The freshman picked up NCAA provisional marks for the third consecutive meet in the 200-yard butterfly (1:58.29) and 200-yard backstroke (1:55.90), and continues to own the fastest time in the country in the 200 back. The 2008 Olympian also finished second in the 200-yard individual medley with a B-Cut time of 1:59.10, the second-fastest time in the country in 2010-11.
Also having success on the women’s side was Stafford and local product Jamie Bohunicky (Gainesville, Fla.). Stafford, a NCAA champion a year ago, won her second and third individual events of the season with victories in the 100-yard backstroke (B-Cut time of 54.58) and 100 fly (55.42). Bohunicky, a sophomore All-American, recorded her second NCAA provisional mark of the season in the 200 free with a third-place finish of 1:49.21.
Returning from the 2010 Commonwealth Games with a school record in the men’s 100-meter back was junior Marco Loughran (London, England), who won the 100 and 200 back. Loughran’s time of 48.36 in the 100 back was a NCAA provisional mark and third-fastest time in the country this season, while his mark of 1:47.05 in the 200 back is the quickest time in the event this year. The 2010 All-American also picked up a B-Cut time in the 200 medley relay along with Fraser, Storie and sophomore Rodion Davelaar (Willemstad, Netherlands Antilles). The relay time of 1:29.57 marked the second-fastest NCAA time this season. Fraser and Davelaar also found success individually, with Fraser winning the 100 free (45.04) and Davelaar triumphing in the 100-yard breaststroke (55.87).
In the diving competition, the Gators swept both the men’s and women’s one and three-meter competitions. Junior Kaylee Doback (Brandon, Fla.) won her first event of the season on the three-meter boards with a score of 304.20. Two weeks after setting the school record in the event and being named the SEC Female Diver of the Week for her efforts, senior Monica Dodson (Franklin, Ind.) finished second in the three-meter competition. On the one-meter boards, Dodson picked up her second one-meter victory of the season with a 263.10 score, while Doback came in second (255.68).On the men’s side, junior Anthony Lewark (Davie, Fla.) swept both diving events with scores of 332.55 on the one-meter boards and 366.98 on the three-meter boards.
The Gator men’s team returns to action this Thursday, Nov. 4, as the Orange and Blue travel to Baton Rouge, La., to take on LSU in another SEC road meet. Meet time is scheduled for 1 p.m. The Lady Gators jump back into the pool the next day on Nov. 5, when it travels to Palo Alto, Calif., to swim against Stanford and Michigan in a double-dual meet. Meet time is slated for 7 p.m. Fans are encouraged to follow the swimming and diving program on Twitter or Facebook.