Thursday November 7, 2013Gator Swimming and Diving Start off UF Homecoming with Sweep Over Alabama
The top-ranked Florida men (4-0, 3-0 SEC) and the third ranked Florida women (2-2, 2-1 SEC) swept Alabama in front of an alumni led crowd on Thursday night in the O’Connell Center. The event marked the beginning of the University of Florida Homecoming weekend.
The Gator men captured 13 of 16 events and won the meet by a total of 169-123. The Florida women seized 15 of 16 events and won the meet by a total of 179-113.
Alabama men (1-2, 0-1 SEC) are ranked 16th, and were the fifth top-16 opponent Florida has defeated. The Crimson Tide women (2-1, 0-1 SEC) came in at No. 25 in CollegeSwimming.com’s most recent poll.
Sound Bites: “We got to see some different events and put some of our younger athletes in some key spots. Alabama is a much improved team the past couple of years. I think their new staff has them going in the right direction. We had the luxury of not being under the gun the whole way, especially the way we jumped on them early in the relays.”- Head Coach Gregg Troy
“It was a good night. We normally don’t see Alabama during the regular season and compete against them mostly at SEC’s. It was good to see some different races and to go against some kids that we normally don’t see until the end of the year.” –Senior Brad deBorde
“They were pretty good (on swimming the 100 backstroke, 200 backstroke and 200 individual medley). I’ve been doing a lot of freestyle lately, so I wasn’t sure what to expect. I was very pleased with my times. We came out with the win, which is always a good thing.”- Senior Elizabeth Beisel
Gator Stars of the Night: The Gators used this meet to gauge the depth of both teams and moved some of the student-athletes out of their primary and secondary events.
· Beisel led the Orange and Blue with a trio of wins. The North Kingstown, R.I., native placed first in the 100 backstroke (54.75), 200 backstroke (1:55.94) and 200 individual medley (2:01.04). Her 200 back was a season low, and all three times are NCAA B cuts.
· Sophomore Natalie Hinds (Midland, Texas) took first in the 50 freestyle (23.07) and the 100 butterfly (54.29).
· Sophomore Kahlia Warner (Queensland, Australia), fresh off of her first career SEC Diver of the Week award, swept the springboard events. Warner delivered a career best three-meter of 353.03 and a season best one-meter of 307.13.
· Sophomore Sinead Russell (Burlington, Ontario, Canada) placed first in the 100 freestyle (50.63) and the 200 freestyle (1:46.97). Both times were season lows, and her 200 free was an NCAA B cut.
· Nine different Gator men earned individual victory on the day, displaying the team’s depth across the board.
Gator relays: Both Florida teams started the meet with a 1-2 finish in the 400 medley relay, setting the tone for the rest of the meet. The foursome of Russell, senior Hilda Luthersdottir, senior Ellese Zalewski and Hinds placed first in 3:39.42, which is a season best and the country’s fifth best time. The men duplicated the success as sophomore Corey Main, junior Eduardo Solaeche Gomez, senior Marcin Cieslak and deBorde touched first in 3:13.39. That mark was .09 off of the Gators’ nation leading relay.
Series History Matchup: The Florida men hold a 27-11 record over Alabama. The Gator women are 25-2 against Alabama.
Streak Continues: The Gator men have now gone 19 straight dual meets without dropping a decision.
High Level Opponents: The Gators have used the early season to go up against some of the top collegiate teams in the country. So far this season, the men’s team has taken down No. 6 Georgia, No. 7 Minnesota, No. 9 Florida State, No. 14 Missouri and No. 16 Alabama. Florida women have defeated Missouri, No. 15 Florida State and No. 25 Alabama and dropped close duals to No. 1 California and No. 2 Georgia.
Team Rankings: The Gator men were given the top ranking by CollegeSwimming.com and the second ranking by the College Swimming Coaches Association of America (CSCAA). The Gator women were ranked third by CollegeSwimming.com and fifth by CSCAA. CSCAA currently has six SEC men’s teams in the top-25 and CollegeSwimming.com currently has eight SEC men’s teams in the top-25.
Next Time Out: Both Gator teams will next compete at the three-day Ohio State Buckeye Invitational in Columbus, Ohio, beginning Nov. 22.
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