Friday March 16, 2012Beisel Breaks Pool Record, Enters 400 IM Finals with Crippen
Sophomore Elizabeth Beisel (North Kingstown, R.I.) entered the pool with a purpose this morning, to not just make the finals, but to do it with one of the best swims in the event. She did just that.
The 2012 SEC Champion in the 400 IM touched in 4:01.57 to not only win her heat, but to garner the top-seed heading into the championship finals and break the James E. Martin Aquatic Center pool record in the process. Not only did she just break the pool record, she shattered it by more than two whole seconds (Ava Ohlgren, 2009, 4:03.70).
With Beisel’s finish, there is no question that the Gators’ race of the day was the 400 IM. Each swimmer donning an orange and blue cap in the pool earlier this morning will swim again tonight.
Teresa Crippen (Conshohocken, Pa.) will join her teammate in the championship finals as the six-seed after putting together a 4:05.99 swim. Fellow senior, Kirsten Smith (Cary, N.C.), will swim down for the Gators with a 15 seed after she put together a 4:09.63 swim in her respective heat to touch first after a thrilling come-from-behind performance in the race against USC’s Tanya Krisman who settles in right behind her in tonight’s consolation swim.
Last year, Beisel was the runner-up in the 400 IM with a 4:00.87 behind USC’s Katinka Hosszu who is seeded fourth heading into tonight’s race. The Gator hopes to replicate her performance from the 2012 SEC Championships where she swam a 3:58.35 in the morning prelims for the first sub 4-minute swim of her career, and later went on to take the top-spot in the race.
The sophomore All-American will be challenged by last night’s 200 IM champion, Caitlin Leverenz from Cal, and reigning champion Hosszu who each topped the NCAA record last night in the event in what many people are calling ‘the race of the meet’.
Crippen backed the Gators last year in Austin with a seventh-place finish and All-America honor in the race.
On top of the three 400 IM swimmers for the Gators, Jamie Bohunicky (Gainesville, Fla.) and Hilda Luthersdottir (Hafnarfjordur, Iceland) will each be swimming down in tonight’s finals.
Bohunicky will represent Florida in the 200 free after posting a 1:45.14 in her morning swim, and enter the consolation final as the 16 seed, after three swimmers – Georgia’s Jordan Mattern, Missouri’s Shara Stafford and Cal’s Catherine Breed – tied for the number nine seed with a time of 1:44.72. At last year’s NCAA Championship meet, Bohunicky finished eighth in the championship final of the 200 free to pick up her first individual All-America honor.
Luthersdottir will make her second appearance in the in the 100 breast consolation tonight. Last year in her NCAA Championship debut, the then freshman broke the school record in the morning prelims touching in 1:00.10 and followed it with a 1:00.16 performance later in the day. Tonight, she enters the field as the 13 seed with 1:00.21 swim from this morning’s trials.
Just missing tonight’s finals are senior Sarah Bateman (Orlando, Fla.) along with Florida’s 200 medley relay. Bateman will be the first alternate in the 100 fly after clocking in at 52.56 to be ranked 17th overall.
The women’s 200 medley relay team just missed the chance to swim in tonight’s final after Beisel, Luthersdottir, Bateman and Frehling combined to touch in 1:39.20, to finish 17th in the field.
Also taking to the pool tonight will be Florida’s 800-yard freestyle relay.
The 2012 NCAA Championships will continue tonight from the James E. Martin Aquatic Center in Auburn, Ala. For live stats, please follow this link. ESPN will be providing a stream of tonight’s events at www.WatchESPN.com. Gators will be swimming in the 400 IM, 200 free, 100 breast and will also feature an appearance by the 800 freestyle relay team.
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 Medley Relay, 17th, 1:39.20
Elizabeth Beisel, back, 24.99
Hilda Luthersdottir, breast, 28.00
Sarah Bateman, fly, 23.63
Kaitlin Frehling, free, 22.58
Elizabeth Beisel, 1st, 4:01.57
Teresa Crippen 6th, 4:05.99
Kirsten Smith, 15th, 4:09.63
Sarah Bateman, 17th, 52.56
Kaitlin Frehling, 52nd, 54.67
Jamie Bohunicky,16th, 1:45.14
Natasha Fung, 38th, 1:47.37
Hilda Luthersdottir, 13th, 1:00.21