Saturday October 15, 2011Gators Clinch Dual Victory in SEC Opener Against LSU
The University of Florida men’s and women’s swimming and diving team defeated LSU in its 2011-12 SEC debut Saturday afternoon at the Stephen C. O’Connell Center. The women bested the Tigers 171-122, while the men grabbed a 185-115 victory. The victory secured Florida’s unbeaten streak against the Tigers, and marked the second and third consecutive SEC-opening victories for the men and women, respectively.
The Gators combined to sweep five separate events: the men’s 200 free, 200 fly and 200 IM – with a freshman taking the first-place finish in each event. The women combined to sweep the distance events, placing Gators in each of the top-three spots in the 500 and 1,000 free.
Freshman Eduardo Solaeche (Madrid, Spain) captured the 200 free title, touching the wall in 1:40.14. Teammates Connor Signorin (East Windsor, N.J.) and Jason Taylor (Plant City, Fla.) quickly followed finishing second and third with marks of 1:40.30 and 1:40.34. Dan Wallace (North Berwick, Scotland) led the way for the Gators in the 200 fly with a 1:50.32 mark. Junior Cameron Martin (Clearwater, Fla.) finished second in 1:22.46, while Signorin took third, touching the wall in 1:52.22.
The trio of Carlos Omana (Miami, Fla.), Matt Curby (Oviedo, Fla.) and Brian Howell (Cincinnati, Ohio) swept the men’s 200 IM, taking first through third with times of 1:52.17, 1:54.07 and 1:54.13, respectively.
Angelina Ballatore (Gainesville, Fla.) won the 500 free title in 4:56.32. Teammates Lauren Neidigh (Orange Park, Fla.) and Kirsten Smith followed Ballatore, finishing second (4:56.92) and third (4:57.59), respectively. In the 1,000 free, Alicia Mathieu (Marlborough, Conn.) took home first, with a time of 9:57.47. Sharla Milne took second in the event, finishing in 10:02.74, while Neidigh finished third with a 10:08.25 mark.
Jamie Bohunicky (Gainesville, Fla.) and Brad deBorde (Longwood, Fla.) combined to win both 50 free events, touching in 23.52 and 20.73, respectively. Also winning both events were Sarah Bateman (Orlando, Fla.) and Elliott, who each won the 100 breast. Bateman finished in 1:02.51 while Elliot claimed with a 54.69 mark, both NCAA “B” Cuts.
Other first place finishers include Alana Pazevic (Mill Creek, Wash.) in the 100 back (56.41), Jamie Bohunicky in the 100 free (50.74), Teresa Crippen (Conshohocken, Pa.) in the 200 back (2:01.02), Hilda Luthersdottir (Hafnarfjordur, Iceland) in the 200 breast (2:17.46) and Taylor in the 500 free (4:29.61).
Florida took home both 400 medley and free relay titles. Elizabeth Beisel (North Kingstown, R.I.), Luthersdottir, Crippen and Bateman took the title home for the women in 3:44.96 in the 400 MR, while the group of Curby, Elliott, Marcin Cieslak (Warsaw, Poland) and deBorde bested LSU with a time of 3:19.14. Beisel, Crippen and Bateman then teamed up with Bohunicky later in the evening to finish first (3:24.41) in the 400 freestyle relay. Soleache, deBorde, James Turner (Ft. Pierce, Fla.) and Matt Norton (Port Orange, Fla.) pulled together in a nail-biting finish to capture the 400 FR victory in 3:02.06.
In the morning diving session, sophomore Danielle Risley (Jacksonville, Fla.) and senior Anthony Lewark (Davie, Fla.) combined to finish first in both the one- and three-meter events. Risley posted a score of 282.00 on the one-meter boards and 296.63 on the three-meter boards. Teammate, Kaylee Doback (Brandon, Fla.) finished fourth on the one-meter springboard with 250.95 points and second on the three-meter boards with a 289.85 mark. Lewark captured the one-meter title with 332.93 points, and the three-meter title with a 357.68 mark. Divers Chris Jones (Palm City, Fla.) and Mike Lewark also helped to post points for the Gators, scoring on both the one- and three-meter boards.
Full results can be found here.
The Gators take to the pool again when they travel to SEC opponent Arkansas on Thursday, Oct. 20, which is slated to begin at 6 p.m. The women’s team will continue to travel as they make their way to Texas for the Dallas Classic, slated for Oct. 21-22. Meet time is set for 7 p.m. each day. Fans are also encouraged to follow the swimming and diving program on Twitter or Facebook for live updates, photos and video from the event