FAYETTEVILLE, Ark, November 2. THE No.17 Texas A&M women's swimming & diving team ran its season record to a perfect 4-0 with a 178-113 victory over the University of Arkansas on Saturday afternoon.
The Aggies won 12 of 16 events, including both relays, in a well-rounded team effort against the Razorbacks. The win also marks the first time
the Aggie women have won in Fayetteville since Nov. 19, 1983.
"Whenever we've raced them at our place, we have tended to win handily but when we race up here, they are always ready for us," A&M head coach Steve Bultman said. "It's tough to travel up here and get a win. It feels good to break through and finally do that."
Freshman Rebecca Sturdy continued her impressive season with a second consecutive hat trick in the pool. Sturdy won both the 100 and 200-yard backstrokes and turned in a seasonal best in the 100 fly (56.18). She also swam anchor leg on the winning 400 freestyle relay to close the meet. Study is a perfect 7-0 in individual races this season and has NCAA consideration marks in both backstrokes.
"She has had some good solid swims for us so far," Bultman said. "She was pressed in the 100 fly and came through with a season best time in what turned out to be a close race."
A pair of juniors also turned in strong performances on Saturday. Kelsey Savage and Danielle Townsend each won two events apiece for the Aggies. Savage turned in seasonal bests in both the 200 breast (2:23.03) and the 200 individual medley (2:09.50) to notch a pair of wins for A&M. Townsend was equally as impressive, turning in the Aggies' fastest 50 free time of the year (23.77) for first place while also capturing the 100 free in 51.51. She was also theonly swimmer to compete on both winning relays for the Aggies.
"Danielle is swimming very well sprint-wise," Bultman said. "She has really stepped up in her training and because of that it's showing in competitions. "It was good to see Kelsey come through. Her times were much better than what she has done so far this season. She is one of our better medley swimmers so it's good to see her break through and swim like that. She is also one of our captains and is doing a great job in that area as well."
Junior Casey Mucha broke away from a tight four-person pack in the final 100 yards to earn the win in the 200 freestyle (1:53.18). Mucha's win keyed a 1-2-3 A&M finish, enabling the Aggies to put some distance between the two teams in the point standings.
The Aggies, for all practical purposes, put the meet away with a 1-2-3-4 finish in the 100 breaststroke. Sophomore Britney Pesek turned in her best time of the year, 1:05.79, to outdistance teammates Savage, and Erin Briskie and Michelle Kohutek who tied for third.
The foursome of Courtney Patterson, Erin Briskie, Millie Reynolds and Townsend opened the meet with a win in the 200 medley relay while Townsend, Katy Lieb, Ewelina Zwierzykowski and Sturdy provided a bookend with a win in the 400 free relay.
The Aggies will have three weeks off before hosting the Texas A&M Fall Invitational on Nov. 21-23 at the Student Rec Center Natatorium in College Station. Among the teams slated to attend are No. 8 SMU, No. 10 UCLA, co-No. 17 Virginia, No. 19 Notre Dame and No. 20 Florida State.
"With the invitational coming up, the team will be challenged," Bultman said. "One of the main reasons these teams are coming is to get used to our pool and community before the NCAA Championships in March. This will be one of the best, if not the best, women's collegiate meet(s) we've ever had here."