Eric Friese Goes 19.46, Leads A-Cut 200 Free Relay for Florida at Auburn Invitational

Leah Braswell; Photo Courtesy: Peter H. Bick

Florida’s men’s 200 freestyle relay posted a time of 1:17.01 at the Auburn Invitational Wednesday, the 10th-fastest time in program history and an NCAA A cut.

On the women’s side, Leah Braswell won the 500 freestyle, posting the fastest time in the country at 4:38.69. The Gators lead both team contests, by a 160-127 score on the women’s side and 164-120 on the men’s after Day 1 of the three-day meet.

Eric Friese won the men’s 50 free in a time of 19.64. He combined with Adam Chaney, who was second in 19.51, Kieran Smith and Will Davis for the 200 free relay, Chaney leading the way with a split of 19.19. Friese’s time in the 50 free was seventh-fastest in program history, the same placement as Smith hit with a personal-best 1:41.72 to win the 200 individual medley.

Florida’s Trey Freeman outdueled teammate Bobby Finke in the 500 free with a time of 4:15.04, winning by just two hundredths of a second. Smith led an IM 1-2 with Miguel Cancel. The Gators swept the top three spots in the 50 and won the 400 medley relay via Smith, Dillon Hillis, Friese and Freeman.

Braswell’s time in the 500 free was quickest by more than four seconds. Vanessa Pearl paced a 1-2 finish in the 200 IM with Kathleen Golding, Pearl clocking in at 1:55.61. Talia Bates won the 50 free for the Gators with a lifetime-best 22.30, with teammate Katelyn Mack a tenth of a second back in second.

The Gators also claimed both relays at the Auburn Invitational, with the 200 free (Bates, Mack, Kirschtine Balbuena, Gabrielle Hillis) going 1:29.56 and the 400 medley (Lain Shahboz, Cecilia Porter, Bates, Mack) going 3:34.24.

Auburn won both diving events, with Ashlynn Sullivan rallying to take the women’s three-meter with a score of 300.45 and Conner Pruitt claiming the men’s one-meter in 381.90.