Florida Women Narrowly Beat Florida State; Florida Men Dominate Seminoles

GAINESVILLE, Florida, January 4. A case of the flu nearly created an upset for the Florida women’s swimming and diving program, as the Gators narrowly defeated Florida State, while the Florida men had no problem dispatching their in-state rivals.

The men won with a score of 180-118, while the Florida women eked out a 153-147 win.

“I was proud of the women’s side,” Florida head coach Gregg Troy said after the meet. “We have a couple cases of the flu running through our team and we were running back and forth to the locker room. They stayed on top of their game and I am real proud of the efforts. We’ve got some work to do.”

In the women’s meet, Elizabeth Beisel was in her typical tough racing form, winning the 100 back with a 55.60 and the 200 back with a 1:58.49. Mere minutes later, Beisel posted a second-place finish in the 200 breast behind teammate Hilda Luthersdottir, 2:17.09 to 2:18.24.

Florida and Florida State each won eight events in the women’s meet, and it appears that the swing event for Florida was the 1000 free. The Gators went 1-2-3-4 with Alicia Mathieu winning with a 9:55.24 followed by Jessica Thielmann (9:57.82), Jordan Smith (9:58.43) and Autumn Finke (10:01.23). With only three swimmers per team allowed to score points per event, Finke’s time was not scored, but it gave Florida a healthy 16-3 cushion.

Kaitlyn Dressel was a double winner for Florida State, taking the 50 free with a 22.90 over teammate Tiffany Oliver’s 23.14, and the 100 free with a 50.49 to Oliver’s 50.84.

In the men’s meet, Florida won 12 events to Florida State’s four. Three Gators — Mitch D’Arrigo, Carlos Omana and Brad Deborde — put up double wins to hammer home the big win.

D’Arrigo, a freshman making an immediate impact, won the 200 free with a 1:38.36 in a close race with Florida State’s Pawel Werner. The two were never separated by more than six tenths of a second, with D’Arrigo winning wire-to-wire over Werner’s 1:38.98. D’Arrigo had an easier time in the 500 free, winning by three seconds over Sebastien Rousseau with a 4:25.27.

Omana took home wins in the two toughest events on the schedule. He started with a 9:08.26 in the 100 free and wrapped up the day with a 3:54.69 in the 400 IM.

As for Deborde, he continues to chase the goal of breaking 20 seconds unshaved and unrested in the 50 free. He posted his second-fastest unrested time of the season today with a 20.05, just off the 20.03 he swam against Alabama in November. He posted a 19.48 in the Buckeye Invite a little more than a month ago to sit seventh in the nation. Deborde also won the 100 free today with a 44.93.

Besides the sweep of the diving events by Tom Neubacher, Florida State’s Pavel Sankovich was the other winner for the Seminoles. He won the 100 back with a 47.33 and the 100 fly in 46.49.

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