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Friday November 5, 2004Gator Swimming and Diving Leads Boilermaker Challenge

West Lafayette, Ind.

The University of Florida menís and womenís swimming and diving teams lead the overall competition after the first day of events at the 2004 Boilermaker Challenge hosted by Purdue University at the Boilermaker Aquatic Center. The men lead the four-team field with a total score of 300 points, while the womenís team amassed 197 points to hold the top spot in the eight-team field.

In womenís action, junior diver Jessica Ranieri (Huntington Valley, Pa.) captured the only event title for the Gators on the opening day of competition, as she took top honors in the one-meter springboard event with a total score of 274.00. Teammate Nicole Bolt (Orlando, Fla.) added a third-place finish in the same event, posting a score of 262.35.

In the 500-yard freestyle, the women turned in some inspiring performances as the Gators captured three of the four heat titles en route to capturing third, fourth and seventh-place in the event. The trio of freshman Caroline Burckle (Lousiville, Ky.), sophomore Leah Retrum (Columbus, Ind.) and sophomore Katie Ball (Cincinnati, Ohio) each recorded NCAA "B" provisional times in the event by posting times under the 4:54.02 requirement.

Senior Maureen Farrell (Northridge, Calif.) earned a seventh-place finish in the 50-yard freestyle, in a time of 23.77 seconds, as she took on some of the nationís best freestyle sprinters in a very tight race.

In the final event of the day, the womenís 400-yard individual medley team of Farrell, Vipa Bernhardt (Bad Hersfield, Germany), Mary Uhle (Sankt Ingbert, Germany) and Burckle posted a time of 3:45.86, to earn a third-place finish.

In menís action, the Gators came out firing as the 200-yard freestyle relay team of Nick Borreca (Honolulu, Hawaii), Adam Sioui (Ontario, Canada), Daniel Penniman (Pensacola, Fla.) and Darian Townsend (Montrose, South Africa) recorded a third-place finish in a time of 1:22.53.

Like the women, the men also enjoyed a solid performance in the 500-yard freestyle as the Gators would utilize the trio of Albert Medrano (Sabadell, Spain), Tobias Work (Falmouth, Mass.) and Scott Kaufmann (Sparks, Nev.) captured third through fifth places, with times of 4:28.61, 4:29.06 and 4:29.14 respectively.

Junior Ryan Lochte (Daytona Beach, Fla.) remained undefeated in the 200-yard individual medley as he took top honors in the event in a time of 1:48.04.

In the 50-yard freestyle, the Gator duo of Townsend and Borreca earned third and fourth-place finishes respectively, by recording times of 20,76 seconds and 20.98 seconds.

The diving duo of Vitor Assuncao (Orlando, Fla.) and Justin Schmidt (Falcon, Colo.) led the Gators to a fourth and fifth-place finish in the three-meter springboard event.

In the final overall event of the night, the Gator relay of Lochte, Bill Mrazek (Tallahassee, Fla.) Sioui and Townsend, coasted to a time of 3:16.59 to capture the eventís title.

The Boilermaker Challenge continues tomorrow with two sessions of competition. The morning session is slated to start at 11 a.m., while the evening session will get underway at 6 p.m.



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