CHAPEL HILL, North Carolina, January 12. THE 10th-ranked University of North Carolina men's and women's swimming and diving team led from start to finish in defeating Clemson and Rutgers Saturday afternoon at the Maurice J. Koury Natatorium while the 15th-ranked Tar Heel men used their strength in diving and the distance freestyles to post a 168-132 victory over Clemson.
In their first outside competition since hosting Nike Cup in the middle of November, the Tar Heel women and men both improved to 2-2 overall and 2-0 in the ACC heading into dual meets in eight days against Virginia at Koury Natatorium.
On the women's side, North Carolina won both relay events and 11 of the 14 individual events to ease past the Tigers. It is the 25th dual meet win for UNC in 30 all-time meets against Clemson.
Individually, senior Erika Matheis swept the one- and three-meter diving events, senior Lindsey Marck copped both butterfly events and junior Whitney Sprague had decisive wins in the two distance freestyle events.
Sophomore Alison Clemens was the standout of the meet for UNC as she took the 100- and 200-yard breaststrokes and the 200-yard individual medley.
On the men's side, the Tar Heels overcame second-place finishes in both relays to swim and dive their way to their solid win over the Tigers just two months after finishing third behind Clemson's second-place standing at Nike Cup. Freshman Tyler Harris showed his versatility in the Tar Heel lineup by winning three events for Carolina – the 200 fly, the 200 breast and the 200 IM.
Senior Ryan Funderburk was a dominant force on both boards for Carolina including a 70-point win on the three-meter board.
Freshman Joe Kinderwater was brilliant. His time of 9:07.17 in the 1000-yard freestyle made him the second-fastest performer ever for Carolina in the event. The only individual to go faster is sophomore teammate Chip Peterson whose school record was set as his 1000-yard split in an All-America performance in the 1650-yard freestyle at the 2007 NCAA Championships. Kinderwater also took top honors in the 500-yard freestyle, edging teammate Yi-Khy Saw by .03 of a second.
Sophomore Jeff James also had two individual wins for Carolina as he won the 200-yard freestyle and 200-yard backstroke.
The Tar Heel diving corps was a key part of the win as it outscored its Clemson counterpart 30-8, accounting for 22 points of UNC's 36-point margin.
North Carolina improved to 44-5-1 all-time in dual meets against Clemson. The Heels handed the Tigers their first dual-meet loss since October 27 when Clemson lost 176-116 at Virginia.
The No. 15 UNC men will host the No. 14 Virginia men on January 20 at 12 noon at Koury Natatorium. UNC will be seeking its first dual meet win against the Cavaliers since 1999. The No. 10 Tar Heel women will host the No. 15 Virginia women on January 20 at 3 p.m.
Special thanks to UNC for contributing this report.