AUSTIN, Texas, January 17. THE fifth-ranked University of Texas women's
swimming and diving helped co-head coach Mike Walker celebrate the birth of his second son, Tilden Michael, on Friday afternoon by knocking off rival Texas A&M, 169-28, at the Lee and Joe Jamail Texas Swim Center.
The win improves the Longhorns to 4-1 on the season as they prepare to take on second-ranked Georgia on Saturday at noon at the Lee and Joe Jamail Texas Swim Center.
"Obviously the best part of today for me was the birth of my second son," Walker said. "In terms of swimming, the best part was that a number of our swimmers took risks today. Some of them went out faster than usual and some tried an easier pace, but most importantly they were not doing the same thing they've been doing all year. Our team has taken a lot of things from training and applied them to racing. Today we took a huge step and if we continue to do that, we're going to suprise a lot of people."
Texas immediately took control of the meet by winning the first two events of the day. In the 400-yard medley relay, the team of junior All-American Sarah Wanezek (Brookfield, Wis.), freshman Elizabeth Tinnon (Bowling Green, Ky.), freshman Katie Robinson (Dillsboro, Ind.) and sophomore Kristy Siminski (Portage, Ind.) cruised to the top time of 3:44.47 to set the tone.
Freshman Stephanie Anderson (Scottsdale, Ariz.) and sophomore Amanda Larence (Harleysville, Pa.) immediately followed Texas' victory in the 400-yard medley relay by taking the top two spots in the 1,000-yard freestyle. Anderson won her first race as a Longhorn with a time of 9:54.97 and would later add the second win of her career by posting the top time in the 500-yard freestyle at 4:54.35. Larence followed in second at 10:10.05 in the 1,000-yard freestyle and junior captain Elizabeth Hoffman (Houston, Texas) rounded out Texas' top finishers in the event by placing fourth at 10:20.74.
Five other Texas swimmers went on to win seven individual events as Tinnon and Wanezek both won multiple races. Tinnon dominated the 100-yard breaststroke at 1:01.57 and added the top showing in the 200-yard breaststroke with a mark of 2:15.65, while Wanezek was victorious in the 100- and 200-yard butterfly with times of 54.65 and 2:01.35, respectively.
Texas also swept the backstroke events with freshman Connie Brown (Andover, Mass.) and sophomore Elizabeth Wycliffe (Kingston,
Ontario) winning the 100- and 200-yard backstroke, respectively.
Brown edged Wycliffe in the 100-yard backstroke, 55.39 to 55.64,
while Wycliffe's time of 2:00.4 topped Brown's third-place mark of
2:01.72 in the 200-yard backstroke.
The Longhorns other individual victory in the pool came from senior Lacey Elliott (El Paso, Texas). Elliott led a trio of UT swimmers that placed in the top five in the 50-yard freestyle with a time of 23.65, while sophomore Jaclyn Faulkner (New Orleans, La.) was third at 24.02 and classmate Jennifer Robbins (Atlanta, Ga.) was fifth at 24.24.
On the boards, senior All-America Honorable Mention Ally Hartzell (Cedar Park, Texas) led the way with a runner-up finish on the three-meter and a third-place showing on the one-meter. Hartzell posted a score of 270.16 on the three-meter and 244.13 on the one-meter. Junior Katura Horton-Perinchief (Etobicoke, Ontario) was third on the three-meter with a mark of 269.77.
Texas will return to action on Saturday, Jan. 16 when it hosts second-ranked Georgia at noon at the Lee and Joe Jamail Texas Swim Center.