ATHENS, Georgia, December 4. THE Auburn swimming and diving team picked up six titles on the second day of competition at the Georgia Fall Invitational Saturday at the Gabrielsen Natatorium on the campus of the University of Georgia.
The Auburn men hold the lead with 750.5 points, while host Georgia is second with 603 points. Minnesota is third (493.5), Virginia is fourth (424) and Penn State stands in fifth (304). The Georgia women are first with 835 points and the Auburn women are second with 541.5 points. Virginia is third (387.5), Penn State is fourth (363), Kansas holds fifth (264), Harvard is sixth (176) and Minnesota is seventh (118).
“It is an exciting day to be a Tiger with eyes both on the pool and on the football field,” head coach Brett Hawke said. “The team did outstanding today and I’m again very proud of everyone’s performances. The relays were top-notch again for us.”
Highlighting the evening was Auburn’s finish in the men’s 100 back as the Tigers took the top five spots in the event. Sophomore Kyle Owens finished first in 47.54 and junior Max Murphy came in second in 47.69. Seniors Kohlton Norys and Jared White took third (47.72) and fourth (48.39), respectively, and sophomore Tony Cox finished fifth in 49.07.
The Tigers opened the evening’s session with a pair of first-place finishes in the 200 medley relay. The women’s team of Emily Bos, Micah Lawrence, Olivia Scott and Arianna Vanderpool-Wallace clocked a NCAA “B” cut time of 1:37.99.
The men finished 1-2 in the 200 medley relay with the senior quartet of White, Adam Klein, Adam Brown and Norys taking first in a “B” time of 1:26.30. The team of Cox, Stuart Ferguson, Nimrod Hayet and Karl Krug came in second in a “B” time of 1:27.60.
Klein and Ferguson went 1-2 in the 100 breast as Klein led the way with a “B” time of 53.39, which was fourth-best in the nation this year. Ferguson finished second with a season-best and “B” time of 53.97. Freshman Peter Haas swam in the consolation final and finished 14th overall in 57.28.
Another Auburn 1-2 finish came in the women’s 100 fly as Vanderpool-Wallace and Scott took the top spots. Vanderpool-Wallace finished first in 52.72 and Scott was second in 53.79. Scott’s preliminary time of 53.25 was the top time in the morning session. Junior Kelsey Winters finished seventh in the event (55.18) and sophomore Lindsey Norberg was eighth (55.19).
On the diving side of competition, redshirt senior Dan Mazzaferro finished first on the three-meter with a score of 393.15 and junior Adam Godzinski was second with a career-best score of 364.45. Sophomore Thad Ellis finished fourth (351.20) and John Santeiu IV was fifth (346.20).
Junior Anna Aguero picked up a second-place finish on the one-meter with a score 302.85. Classmate Vennie Dantin was fifth with 282.40 points.
The Tigers got a pair of third-place finishes in the women’s 100 back and the 100 breast. Bos took third in the 100 back in a “B” time of 53.20, while sophomore Lauren Norberg was third in the 100 breast in 1:01.04. Norberg’s “B” time of 1:00.94 was a career-best.
A pair of Tiger men swam in the championship final of the 400 IM in Hayet and Owens with each coming away with “B” cut times. Hayet took fourth in 3:53.00, while Owens finished fifth in 3:53.42. Freshman Evan Noble led the group of four in the consolation final as he finished first (ninth overall) in 3:55.66. Robert Looney took 11th (3:57.45), Andrew Mitchell was 12th (3:59.54) and Chris Kramer came in 13th (4:00.04).
Mitchell and Hayet also competed in the championship final of the 100 fly with Mitchell taking seventh in 49.12 and Hayet finishing eighth in 49.74. Freshman Chris Manning took 11th overall in 49.42, while Tony Cox was 12th (49.52), Modrov finished 14th (49.67) and Sam Kiefer came in 16th (50.57).
Senior Caitlin Geary represented Auburn in the championship final of the 400 IM and came away with an eighth-place finish in 4:19.00. Her “B” time of 4:18.55 in the preliminaries was a season-best. Sophomore Katie Gardocki competed in the “C” final and clocked a team-best time of 4:15.75.
Sophomore Rebecca Jones and senior Micah Martindale swam in the championship final of the 200 free for Auburn. Jones came in seventh with a time of 1:48.37 after swimming 1:47.85 in the preliminaries. Martindale finished eighth in 1:51.09, but swam 1:47.97 in the morning session. The men were led by Brown, who took fourth in 1:37.33.
The Tigers closed the meet with the 800 free relay and the women’s team of Martindale, Jones, Siena DeVenuto and Geary took fifth in a “B” time of 7:18.43. The men’s quad of Owens, Norys, Brown and Disney-May finished the day strong and took third in the event in a “B” time of 6:34.74.
Competition concludes Sunday with preliminaries in the200 back, 100 free, 200 breast and 200 fly. Finals are set to begin at 2 p.m. CT from the Gabrielsen Natatorium on the campus of the University of Georgia.
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