Thursday March 15, 2012Bateman Breaks 50 Free School Record in NCAA Day One Morning Prelims
The University of Florida women’s swimming and diving team kicked-off day one of the NCAA Division I Swimming and Diving Championships with the 200 freestyle and 400 medley relay along with 50-free sprinter, Sarah Bateman (Orlando, Fla.), advancing to each of their respective consolation finals.
Bateman and the Gators opened the meet with the starting leg of the women’s 200 free relay in record-breaking fashion as the senior clocked the fastest 50 free of her career, 21.95, in the opening split. The time breaks her previous school-record of 22.00, and marks the first time in Orange and Blue history that a member of the women’s swim team has swam under the 22-second marker.
Joining Bateman this morning in the 200 free relay was junior Jamie Bohunicky (Gainesville, Fla.), sophomore Kaitlin Frehling (St. Petersburg, Fla.) and senior Teresa Crippen (Conshohocken, Pa.), as the duo kicked off the three-day meet with a 1:29.42 effort. It wasn’t enough to advance them to the championship final, but gives them a No. 12 seed heading into tonight’s consolation final.
With her record-breaking performance this morning, Bateman will also make an appearance in tonight’s 50-free consolation finals after she stopped the clock at 22.18, and will enter tonight’s race with a No. 10 seed.
The group of sophomores Elizabeth Beisel (North Kingstown, R.I.) and Hilda Luthersdottir (Hafnarfjordur, Iceland), along with seniors Crippen and Bateman will also jump into the pool tonight with a tenth place seed in the 400 medley relay finals after touching in 3:32.63.
With another fiery-hot opening split, Beisel recorded a personal-best in the 100 back with a time of 52.43. It bests her previous time of 53.15, and gives her the second-quickest time in UF history behind Gator record-holder Gemma Spofforth (50.46s).
The 200 individual medley featured four Gator swimmers and ended in a heart-breaking fashion as Beisel, who was in the hunt for a top-three finish, was disqualified from the race due to a false start. With the news, no Orange and Blue caps will be swimming in tonight’s 200 IM finals as Luthersdottir was the team’s highest finisher after she touched in 1:58.79 for the 26th overall finish. The sophomore was followed by senior Kirsten Smith (Cary, N.C.) who stopped the clock at 1:58.88 for 29th overall and freshman Natasha Fung (Edmonton, Canada), who made her NCAA Championship debut with a 2:01.91 effort for 54th in the field.
In the 500 free, sophomore Alicia Mathieu (Marlborough, Conn.) touched in 4:44.09 to finish third in her respective heat, and was later followed by teammate, Bohunicky, who clocked in at 4:42.94 for fifth in her heat. With each of their times, neither Gator swimmer will advance to tonight’s final in the event, as the duo finished 30th and 22nd, respectively.
The 2012 NCAA Championships will continue tonight from the James E. Martin Aquatic Center in Auburn, Ala. Florida will swim in three events including the 200 freestyle relay, the 50 free and 400 medley relay. For live stats, please follow this link. Live streaming will be provided free-of-charge by clicking here.
For all the latest information on Florida women’s swimming and diving at the NCAA Championships, please log on to www.GatorZone.com/swimmingdiving/women or, for up-to-the-minute updates from Auburn, Ala., follow swimming and diving on Twitter @GatorZoneSwimDv. You can also follow the Gators on Facebook.
200 Free Relay
1:29.42, 12th, advances to consolation final
Jamie Bohunicky, 22nd, 4:42.94
Alicia Mathieu, 30th, 4:44.09
Hilda Luthersdottir, 26th, 1:58.79
Kirsten Smith, 29th, 1:58.88
Natasha Fung, 54th, 2:01.91
Elizabeth Beisel, DQ
Sarah Bateman, 10th, 22.18, advances to consolation final
Kaitlin Frehling, 53rd, 22.85
400 Medley Relay
3:32.63, 10th, advances to consolation finals
Beisel, backstroke, 52.43
Luthersdottir, breaststroke, 1:00.38
Crippen, butterfly, 51.89
Bateman, free, 47.93