GAINESVILLE, Fla. ¯ In their final dual meet of the season, the No. 2 Auburn men and the No. 4 Auburn women defeated No. 14 and No. 8 Florida keeping both Tigers' season records perfect heading into the Southeastern Conference Championships.
The AU women defeated the Florida Gators 130.5 – 110.5 and the men captured a 153-90 win over the Gators.
"Overall, I was very pleased with the women's performance," head coach David Marsh said. "Heather Kemp has made substantial improvements and our sprints are really coming around. I think that with Becky (Short) and Eileen (Coparropa) are a 1-2 punch not just at dual meets, but at the NCAA level as well.
"The men were kind of hot and cold tonight. I was pleased overall, but we relaxed in some races. The IMers were key tonight going 1-2-3 and the distance free is really leading the way for us. Kirk Hampleman has been a consistent senior leader and I really think our 400 free relay tonight was impressive. It was the best in-season time in six or seven years."
The women started off strong taking first and second in the 400-yard medley relay with the team of Kirsty Coventry, Laura Swander, Demerae Christianson and Cassidy Maxwell taking first, with Auburn's fastest time of the year (3:42.74), and Taylor Spivey, Kelly Jones, Margaret Hoelzer and Eileen Coparropa finishing second (3:44.88).
The Auburn men duplicated the women's first place finish with Kirk Hampleman, Pat Calhoun, Nick Kozyra and Matt Kidd taking first with a time of 3:15.05.
Florida finished one, two, three in the 1000 free, sophomore Magda Dyszkiewicz took fourth for the Tigers with a time of 10:05.21. On the men's side; however, the Tigers dominated taking the top three spots. James Galloway finished first (9:16.45), BJ Jones took second (9:19.79) and Kevin Clements placed third with a time of 9:20.90.
In the 200 free, the Tigers began to pull away as Heather Kemp, Maggie Bowen and Maxwell placed second through fourth respectively while the men saw Clay Kirkland, Brandon Roberts and Ryan Hinz took first, third and fourth for Auburn.
Coparropa and Short each earned their best times of the year in the 50 free as the duo took first and second with Coparropa swimming to a 22.70 and Short at 23.05. For the men, Derek Gibb earned his top time of the season with a second place finish and a time of 20.67 while Ryan Wochomurka placed third with a time of 20.75.
Auburn men and women dominated the 200 individual medley as Bowen and Coventry went one-two with Coventry taking her top time of the year at 2:03.08. On the men's side, Clements took first (1:49.52), Hampleman finished second (1:50.21) and Gangloff came in third (1:50.51).
The points kept coming in the 200 fly as Hoelzer finished second (1:58.98), Bowen was third (1:59.56) and Christianson placed fourth (2:00.92) while on the men's side, Christian Cantwell was second (1:47.93), Kozyra finished fourth (1:50.78) and Hinz was fifth (1:51.47).
Coparropa and Short again took first and second, but this time Short placed first (50.04) and Coparropa second (50.55) in the 100 free. Kidd took second for the Auburn men in the 100 free with a time of 44.44 and Wochomurka and Kirkland finished third and fifth.
Auburn took the first and third spots in both the men's and women's 200 back events including a first place finish by Coventry (1:58.97) and Hampleman (1:45.19) while Hoelzer and Hunt took third for the Tigers.
The men's team swept the 500 free with Jones, Galloway and Roberts finishing one-two-three including a first place time of 4:26.62 from Jones. Kemp took second for the AU women with a time of 4:47.74 and Dyszkiewicz tied for fourth with a time of 4:50.78.
Laura Swander and Kelly Jones took second and third in the 200 breast while Justin Caron won on the men's side (2:01.38) and Mark Gangloff and Will Brandt took third and fourth.
In the 400 free relay, Auburn sealed up the meet with both the women and men claiming first in the final event of the night.
In the diving events, sophomore Ashley Rubenstein took first in the 1-meter with a score of 281.85 and Matt Bricker finished second on the 1-meter with a score of 299.99. Bricker also claimed first in the 3-meter while Rachel Korth placed second with a career-best score of 267.22.
"The bright spots of the evening were Heather Kemp, Kirsty Coventry and definitely our diving," associate head women's coach Kim Brackin said. "Now we just need to keep working. I think tonight gave us an idea of what our weaknesses are and the team took notice of them. A common theme among the team tonight was the confidence boost that this meet gave us and that will be big heading into SECs."
The Tigers will be back in action February 9 for the Orange and Blue Classic or on Feb. 18-23 when they travel to Fayetteville, Ark., for the SEC Championships.