Florida vs. IRCC, Purdue, Arkansas

GAINESVILLE, Florida, January 5. THE University of Florida No. 5 men’s and No. 7 women’s swimming and diving teams used a combined 14 first place finishes and 5 NCAA provisional qualifying times to each pick up a pair of wins against Indian River Community College, No. 12 Purdue on the men’s side and Arkansas on the women’s at the Stephen C. O’Connell Center.

The women defeated Arkansas 114-86 and IRCC 136-54. The men defeated Purdue for the second straight day, totaling 106 points to Purdue’s 97 and also defeated IRCC 140-59.

“We were better today than yesterday. We’ve been going through some training cycles so everyone was a little tired but we got honest efforts from everyone,” said head coach Gregg Troy. “Cody Kauffman and Bradley Ally were real consistent and we got a solid effort both days from Shaune Fraser. On the women’s side, Gemma Spofforth looked good and Samantha Vanderbilt had a lot of consistency.”

Kauffman’s meet was highlighted by a third place finish in the 500 and 1,000-yard freestyle events. Fraser, as always, was one of the most consistent swimmers for the Gators today, swimming his way to three first place finishes while Ally added another two. Spofforth added a win of her own in the 200-yard backstroke and Vanderbilt turned in a second place finish in the 100-yard freestyle.

Florida swept their way through the first event of the afternoon, the 400-yard medley relay. The women’s team of Stephanie Proud (Durham, England), Caroline Burckle (Louisville, Ky.), Julianne Lago (Miami, Fla.) and Natalie Pike (Boca Raton, Fla.) finished with a time of 3:45.16. They were followed by Leah Retrum (Columbus, Oh.), Amanda Hartley (Tallahassee, Fla.), Samantha Vanderbilt (Nashville, Tenn.) and Colleen Healy (Cape Coral, Fla.) who touched in with a time of 3:47.77 to finish second.

Florida’s men led the field by over a second, coming in with a time of 3:17.77. Rex Tullius (Port Orange, Fla.), Bradley Ally (Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.), Shaune Fraser (George Town, Cayman Islands) and Daniel Penniman (Pensacola, Fla.) all continued to have a strong meet through the first event.

Laurabeth Guenthner (Wellington, Fla.) took the win in the 1,000-yard freestyle with a time of 9:46.42. Elizabeth Goldson (Glen Cove, Fla.) swam her way to a fourth place finish with a time of 10:19.19, while Jenne Ballatore (Gainesville, Fla.) was fifth with a time of 10:21.09.

Ryan Crete out-touched Logan Storie (Corvallis, Ore.) at the wall to take the win in the men’s 1,000-yard freestyle. His time of 9:13.32 bettered Storie’s time of 9:13.59. Cody Kauffman (Harrisburg, Pa.) finished with a time of 9:17.58 to take third while Eric Shrestha (Tallahasee, Fla.) rounded out the top finishers from Florida with a fourth place time of 9:26.92.

Elizabeth Kemp (Potomac, Md.) earned a provisional time in the women’s 200-yard free. Kemp’s time of 1:50.22 placed her over a second ahead of the field. Retrum swam to a third place time of 1:51.44, while Stephanie Napier (Chattanooga, Tenn.) clocked in with a fourth place time of 1:52.45.

Fraser joined Kemp on the provisional list with his time of 1:38.23 on the men’s side. His time placed him first, ahead of Penniman who placed third with a time of 1:40.73.

As the meet moved toward the midway point it was Healy who took Florida’s best finish in the women’s 50-yard freestyle. Healy placed third with a time of 24.26 and was joined by Lago who turned in a fifth place finish with a time of 24.58. For the men it was Jos Smith (Milledgeville, Ga.) who had the best Gator finish with a time of 21.28 to place fourth. Hughes touched the wall just behind with a time of 21.32 to take the fifth place spot.

Burckle and Nedrud teamed up to go 1-2 in the women’s 200-yard individual medley. Burckle clocked in with a first place, provisional time of 2:02.51 while Nedrud was second with her time of 2:05.07. On the men’s side, Ally came back in the breaststroke event to take the lead and eventual win. His time of 1:50.67 was just .37 seconds ahead of Purdue’s Romain Maire. McLarty had Florida’s second-best time with his third place finish of 1:51.12.

Sarah Sykes (Jacksonville, Fla.) continued the list of provisional times for the Gators, finishing second in the women’s 200-yard butterfly with a time of 2:01.77. Lindsey Woodward (Assonet, Mass.) followed in third with a time of 2:04.16. On the men’s side it was Hughes’s with the Gator’s best time of 1:49.04. J.B. Walsh (Virginia Beach, Va.) followed with his third place time of 1:49.69.

Pike swam to her first win of the afternoon in the 100-yard free. She touched the wall with a time of 51.06 to just beat fellow Gator, Vanderbilt. Napier rounded out the top three and Gator sweep with her third place time of 52.40. Roland Rudolf (Budapest, Hungary) had the men’s best time, finishing fourth with a time of 46.44, while Smith placed sixth with a time of 46.79.

Gemma Spofforth (West Sussex, England) swam to a provisional time of her own in the 200-yard backstroke. Spofforth’s time of 2:00.46 placed her first overall. She was joined by three more Gators at the top of the leader board as Stacy Nedrud (Melbourne Beach, Fla.) touched in second with a time of 2:04.78, Sarah Peterson touched third with a time of 2:06.72 and Rebekah Epley (Russellville, Ky.) finished fourth with a time of 2:09.16. Tullius won the event for the Florida men by exactly one second, finishing with a time of 1:47.87. McLarty earned another top finish, placing third with a time of 1:50.11.

The 500-yard free produced another Florida win, this time from Proud. Proud took first with her provisional time of 4:52.08. Larson also earned a provisional time of 4:53.44 to secure the third spot. On the men’s side Pedraza added another win for the Gators, leading off another 1-2-3 finish. Pedraza finished ahead of Johnson (4:34.04) and Kauffman (4:36.33) with his time of 4:29.19.

The Gators received solid finishes the rest of the way from Hartley on the women’s side who touched in with a time of 2:18.17 in the 200-yard breast. Kristen Beales (Arlington, Va.) clocked in with a time of 2:27.06 while Gunter came in with a time of 2:27.47. Deery had the best swim for the men, finishing third with a time of 2:07.13. Joyce joined him, finishing fifth with a time of 2:11.49.

In the women’s 400 free relay, the Gators took first with a time of 3:27.47, the team of Vanderbilt, Pike, Burckle and Napier led all swimmers by over two seconds. Spofforth, Lago, Proud and Healy combined to take second with a time of 3:29.60. On the men’s side it was Florida as well, the foursome of Penniman, Smith, Johnson and Fraser out-touched Purdue at the wall with a time of 3:01.44 to conclude the meet.

Special thanks to Florida for contributing this report.

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