KNOXVILLE, Tennessee, October 25. THE Tennessee swimming and diving teams swept Louisville on Thursday at the Allan Jones Aquatic Center in their first home meet of the season.
The Lady Vols (4-0, 1-0 SEC) won 14 of 16 races on their way earning a 190-107 victory. Thanks to winning the close races and strong diving performances, the men's team (3-1, 1-0 SEC) followed suit with a 168.5-131.5 win over the Cardinals.
Head coach Matt Kredich said improved intensity was key in Tennessee's two victories.
“We won every close race, and that hardly ever happens, especially against a team that's as good as Louisville,” Kredich said. “Man, our guys finished. They came off the last wall and they found something, something to finish. It shows the pride they have in each other and the pride they have in the program.”
Sophomore Tristan Slater singlehandedly provided several meets' worth of excitement with a pair of winning late-race surges.
He beat out Louisville opponents at the wall by the slimmest of margins in similarly dramatic come-from-behind victories in the 200-yard butterfly and 200 breaststroke to help the Vols pull away in a close meet.
“I knew I was behind and I thought this last 50 I'm going to give everything I have,” Slater said. “It just all came together and it was nice to get in on the finishes … The team was massive and got me through that. Every single race is for the team and it was just really cool to look up at them after I finished.”
Slater completed his first career three-win day with a strong swim in the 400 individual medley, which he swam for the first time this season.
The divers' performances proved important for the Vols, as is usually the case in a close meet. Tennessee took a 1-2-3 finish in both men's springboard events, with senior Brent Sterling winning the 3 meter and Mauricio Robles taking the 1 meter.
On the Lady Vols' side, senior Kelsey Floyd had a characteristically strong day, winning her three individual races. She took first the 200 butterfly, the 100 butterfly and the 500 freestyle to stay perfect on the day.
Like last week against Kentucky and Indiana, junior Lindsay Gendron was also three-race winner for Tennessee, taking first in the 1650 freestyle and the 200 freestyle in back-to-back races and then taking the 400 IM.
Multiple event winners also included: sophomore Molly Hannis, who again led the Lady Vols to wins in the 100 and 200 breaststroke; freshman Faith Johnson, a winner again in the 50 and 100 freestyle; and senior Jodie McGroarty, who won the 1-meter and 3-meter springboard for the Lady Vols.
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