NCAA Div. I: LSU and Alabama Split -- November 3, 2000
BATON ROUGE, La., Nov. 3 -- The LSU men's swimming and diving team remained undefeated Friday afternoon with a 169.50-128.50 win over the Alabama Crimson Tide, but the Lady Tigers struggled against their Southeastern Conference foes in a 173-123 loss.
"It was a great meet for us today," said LSU head coach Jeff Cavana. "The men picked up a huge win against their big rival,and even though the women lost a lot of points due to their lack of depth, they still swam extremely well."
With the win, the LSU men's team improved to a 3-0 record on the season, and possess a 1-0 mark versus SEC competition. The Lady Tigers dropped to 2-1 with the loss, and have a 0-1 record in the SEC.
Friday's split decision marked the second-such meet of the season for the Crimson Tide. In its lone previous competition of the 2000-01 dual-meet season, Alabama's men were victorious over Florida, 127-110, while the Tide's women's team was defeated, 136-102.
Leading the Tigers to victory was a tandem of seniors who anchored the team with two wins apiece. Ken "Buzz" Kuhn dominated both the 50 and 100-yard freestyle events, as well as the final leg of 400-freestyle relay competition, while Corey Fox victimized the Alabama divers with wins in both the one and three-meter events.
Kuhn, the Tigers' freestyle specialist, took the 50-yard event with a time of 20.32. LSU swept the competition as Matt Elder finished second (21.17) and Martin Latz completed the sweep in 21.70. Kuhn later topped off his performance in the 50 with an
outstanding victory in the 100-freestyle competition. He won handily with a time of 45.11.
"Ken (Kuhn) was awesome today," Cavana said. "He is already swimming as good as he was at the end of last season, and it is only the third meet of the year. I am looking for big things from him, and so far he has led the team."
In the diving competition, the Tigers' Fox took first place in both the one and three-meter springboard events. He finished with a career-high total of 355.50 in the one-meter. LSU swept the men's diving competition for the third time this season as Erik Petursson and Kyle VanArsdall rounded out the top
three on both boards. Alabama's Daniel Burch finished fourth in both events.
In a losing effort, the Lady Tigers' Mandy Leach displayed the best overall performance of the meet. LSU's junior Olympian dominated and won all three of her events: the 100-yard backstroke (57.48), the 200-yard backstroke (2:02.36), and the 100-yard butterfly (56.25).
"Mandy (Leach) almost swam her all-time best today, which is awesome," said Cavana. "She had a great meet, and Donna (Leslie) went back-to-back in the 1000 and 500 which is unbelievable, but we are just not deep enough right now to compete with teams that are."
LSU freshman, Donna Leslie, as well as Jaime Watkins, the Lady Tigers' NCAA Champion diver, took first place in their respective events. Leslie won both the 500 and 1000-yard freestyle competitions, while Watkins breezed through the one and three-meter diving events.
Tiger freshmen, Ross Buffington and Evan Martinec, each won an event versus the Crimson Tide, as did junior Steve Gluck.