CHARLOTTESVILLE, Virginia, November 9. THE University of Texas men's and women's swimming and diving teams swept all six of their dual meets against Virginia, West Virginia and Penn State as a two-day quad meet between the four schools wrapped up this afternoon.
Courtesy of: Univ. of Texas Athletics Photography
Courtesy of: Univ. of Texas Athletics Photography
Texas' Clay Youngquist was the only swimmer to win three events at the meet, as he swept the 200-, 500- and 1,000-yard freestyles; teammates Will Licon (200 IM and 200 breast) and Jack Conger (200 back and 100 fly) added two individual wins. Penn State's Shane Ryan was also impressive, winning the 50 free and 100 back in back-to-back events.
On the women's side, Gretchen Jacques (100 breast and 100 free) and Madisyn Cox (200 IM and 400 IM) had two wins apiece for Texas, while Virginia's Leah Smith (500 and 1,000 free) and Courtney Bartholomew (100 and 200 back) won two events as well.
In the women's meet, Virginia kicked off the second day of competition with a convincing win in the 200 medley relay, as they touched first in 1:41.20 to defeat second-place Penn State (1:42.79). The Cavaliers kept the ball rolling in the next event as Leah Smith, last night's winner in the 500 free, posted an outstanding time in the 1,000 free at 9:42.00. That time sits third nationally behind Florida's Elizabeth Beisel (9:38.49) and Indiana's Lindsay Vrooman (9:38.83).
Carolyn Fittin picked up the Nittany Lions' first victory of the meet in the next event, as she touched first in the 50 free in 23.23, just in front of Texas' Gretchen Jacques (23.26). In the 100 back, Virginia's Courtney Bartholomew showed why she's ranked first in the event nationally with a solid time of 53.43, well ahead of teammate Ellen Williamson (54.78). Bartholomew also won the 200 back last night and has posted a 52.68 in the 100 already this season.
Virginia's Laura Simon, last night's runner-up in the 100 breast, got to the wall first in the longer distance today, winning the 200 breast in 2:14.59, just in front of Texas' Madisyn Cox (2:14.87). Teammate Ellen Williamson then completed a quick turnaround, getting out of the 100 back and winning the 100 fly a few minutes later in 54.48.
The women's 200 free came down to the finish, as three swimmers touched within three tenths of one another. Texas' Sam Tucker led the way with a 1:47.72, just off her seventh-ranked time of 1:47.43 from two weeks ago. Penn State's Alyson Ackman slipped in for second at 1:47.94, while Virginia's Leah Smith grabbed third in 1:48.04.
The final individual event of the meet, the 400 IM, went to Texas freshman Madisyn Cox, who posted a 4:15.14 to edge teammate Kaitlin Pawlowicz (4:16.22). Texas' foursome of Gretchen Jacques, Tasija Karosas, Brynne Wong and Sam Tucker claimed the final 400 free relay in 3:21.33, only .32 ahead of Penn State.
In the men's meet, Penn State opened the second session of competition with a convincing win in the 200 medley relay. Nate Savoy, James Wilson, Sean Grier and John Hauser combined efforts to post a 1:27.75, well ahead of West Virginia's 1:29.99.
Texas' Clay Youngquist grabbed his second victory of the meet with a 9:11.36 in the 1,000 free, adding to his win in the 500 from last night. That sliced six seconds off his previous season best of 9:17.45. In the men's 50 free, Penn State showcased its depth by placing four swimmers in the top six, with Shane Ryan taking the win in 20.38. West Virginia's Tim Squires took second in 20.41, ahead of Penn State's John Hauser (20.45).
Ryan pulled an impressive double, returning one event later to take the 100 back in 47.87, which is the fourth-fastest time in Division I this year. Ryan had only a few heats of the women's 100 back in between to recover but still posted an incredible swim. Teammate Nate Savoy and West Virginia's Bryce Bohman hung with Ryan the whole way, finishing in 48.14 and 48.18, respectively, both of which crack the top 10 nationally.
After posting a 2:00.01 in the 200 breast a couple weeks ago, Texas' Will Licon was probably itching to crack the 2:00 barrier, and he did so today with a 1:59.49, becoming the 11th swimmer to break 2:00 this season. Teammate Jack Conger, who has already posted the fastest time in the country in the 100 fly this season at 47.21, finished just off that today with a 47.47, still well ahead of second place finisher Sean Grier of Penn State (48.79).
Clay Youngquist put his stamp on the men's mid-distance freestyle events at the meet, grabbing the triple with a speedy 1:36.97 to win his third event of the meet, the 200 free. That time was actually well off his top-ranked swim of 1:35.71 from two weeks ago. John Martens, also from Texas, ran away with the final individual event of the meet, swimming a 3:53.59 to win the 400 IM. That cut two seconds off his previous best this season and shot him up to ninth in Division I this year.
Penn State earned their second relay victory of the day, posting a 2:57.86 to beat Texas in the 400 free relay.
Men's Team Scores:
Texas 185, Penn State 168
Texas 225, Virginia 128
Texas 259, West Virginia 93
Penn State 191, Virginia 162
Virginia 241, West Virginia 111
Women's Team Scores:
Virginia 226, Penn State 127
Virginia 288, West Virginia 50
Texas 196, Virginia 157
Texas 297, West Virginia 41
Texas 242, Penn State 111
Scores for the Penn State and West Virginia duals were not available.
Results: Penn State, Texas, West Virginia vs. Virginia; Day Two