Kentucky Women, Louisville Men Take Wins in Bluegrass State Showdown

Asia Seidt won both butterfly events for Kentucky. Photo Courtesy: Connor Trimble

The No. 13 University of Kentucky women’s swimming and diving team earned its third straight win over Louisville on Saturday afternoon, recording a 160.5-139.5 win against No. 19 UofL at Ralph Wright Natatorium in Louisville, Kentucky. The No. 25 Kentucky men’s team lost to No. 10 Louisville, 165-135.

Team Scores:

  • Women: #13 Kentucky 160.5, #19 Louisville 139.5
  • Men: #10 Louisville 165, #25 Kentucky 135

Kentucky Swimming and Diving Press Release

The Kentucky women’s team got off to a hot start in the dual meet, winning gold in the first four straight swimming events and the 1-meter springboard diving event. Gaining valuable momentum from the start, the women’s team would end up earning a first-place finish in nine of 16 events – swimming and diving – during the meet.

Opening the meet, Kentucky’s 200-yard medley relay team won the first event by over a full second in 1:39.70. The young foursome included freshman Caitlin Brooks in 24.89, followed by junior Bailey Bonnett in 28.40, then sophomore Izzy Gati in 23.96 and anchored by sophomore Riley Gaines in 22.45.

Keeping with the young theme, a pair of freshmen earned first and second place in the 1000-yard freestyle event to follow. Beth McNeese touched the wall in 9:53.94 to secure gold by more than 10 full seconds, and Ashley Neas followed in 10:05.71.

Recording another 1-2 sweep in the next event, the women’s team took first and second in the 200-yard freestyle. Senior Ali Galyer paced the field, swimming the event in 1:47.39, while sophomore Riley Gaines followed in second place with a time stamp of 1:47.98.

Capping four straight swimming triumphs to begin the meet, three undergraduates recorded a 1-2-3 sweep in the 100-yard backstroke. It would become the first of three 1-2-3 sweeps for the UK women in the meet. Brooks led the Wildcats, winning the 100-yard backstroke in 53.91. Sophomore Sophie Sorenson took second place in 54.82, while freshman Lauren Poole took third place in 54.98.

Two events later in the meet, Galyer and Gaines recorded a 1-2 sweep in the 200-yard freestyle. Galyer touched the wall in 1:47.39 to win, while Gaines followed in 1:47.98.

Continuing its successful momentum, the women’s team notched a 1-2-3 sweep in the 200-yard butterfly. Asia Seidt, a Louisville native and All-American backstroke swimmer, took first place in the 200-yard butterfly in 1:58.39. The versatile swimmer has been swimming in untraditional events this season to help maximize the opportunity for points. Gati finished in second place in 1:58.50, while Poole touched the wall in 2:03.70 for third place.

Seidt also tied for first place in the 100-yard butterfly in 54.52.

Earning the third 1-2-3 sweep of the afternoon, three undergraduates swept the 200-yard backstroke race. The Wildcats are deep in the backstroke events, even without their All-American backstroke swimmers, Seidt and Galyer. In first place, Brooks finished in 1:56.64. In second place, Sorenson recorded a 1:57.39 time stamp, and in third place, Poole finished in 2:00.08.

Galyer, another veteran swimming in untraditional events to help the women’s team maximize its scoring opportunities, took first place in the 500-yard freestyle in 4:50.63. Freshman McNeese forced second place in 4:51.40.

Sophomore Kyndal Knight earned her ninth first-place finish of the season during the dual meet. She earned a score of 292.43 on the 1-meter springboard.

On the men’s side, sophomore Danny Zhang swept the springboard events adding valuable points the men’s team score. The All-American recorded 346.43 points on the 1-meter springboard and 383.55 points on the 3-meter springboard.

Senior Peter Wetzlar also recorded two individual first-place finishes, sweeping the 50- and 100-yard freestyle events. In the 50-yard freestyle, Wetzlar touched the wall in 20.06. In the 100-yard freestyle, the Zimbabwe native recorded a time of 43.79.

The men’s team is senior led, and it was no different in this meet. Senior Glen Brown recorded a 1:37.54 in the 200-yard freestyle, topping the field and setting the pace for a 1-2 finish. Senior Jason Head forced a second-place finish in 1:37.65.

Four seniors earned a first-place finish in the 400-yard freestyle relay, touching the wall in 2:55.21. Wetzlar set the pace in 43.87, followed by Head in 43.27, then John Mitchell in 43.39 and anchored by Brown in 44.68.

Junior Hank Siefert had a gold finish in the 500-yard freestyle, swimming the distance event in 4:26.69.

The men’s team earned six victories of 16 possible.

Louisville Press Release

The No. 10/19 University of Louisville men’s and women’s swimming and diving team split with rival Kentucky Saturday afternoon at the Ralph Wright Natatorium. The Louisville men won 165-135 and the Kentucky women won 160-139.5.

“First of all, how often do we have a packed house?” said Arthur Albiero, UofL head coach. “That’s a celebration of college swimming. That’s the way I see it. I guess I’m getting old. Those are the things that catch my attention these days. I’m proud of the way we fought, both men and women really. The men took charge early and never really let up. This is a special group of guys and they’ve come together in many ways. They are a good blend of youth and experience. It makes things exciting for what’s to come.”

Louisville won 15 individual events and two of four relays and six NCAA B-cuts on the day. The Cardinals were led by multiple winners Evgenii Somov (200 MR, 100 breast, 200 breast), Nicolas Albiero (200 MR, 200 fly, 100 fly) and Daniel Sos (200 back, 200 IM) for the men. Arina Openysheva (100 free, 400 FR), Christiana Regenauer (100 fly, 400 FR), and Lainey Visscher (50 free, 400 FR).

“It’s hard for me to overlook Nicolas Albiero today,” said the elder Albiero. “The way he swam today with a 44 flat in the 200 fly. Very, very competitive. The way he executed really stood out to me more than the time. There are a few things that we are working on. He really put that together. To be able to come back and just have a great meet today. It’s hard to not overlook that. There are plenty of guys who did a great job today. Daniel Sos, Evgenii Somov in the backstroke. Mitchell Whyte. A lot of people had to step up. Ilia Sibirtsev, a freshman finally starting to figure things out. That’s fun, right, when you start to see that moment. The light bulb starts to come together for some of these guys.”

In the first event of the meet, the Cardinal women touched second and third in the 200 medley relay. Ashlyn Schoof (27.13), Mariia Astashkina (27.25), Nastja Govejsek (24.06) and Casey Fanz (22.39) combined forces to post a time of 1:40.83. The foursome of Kyla Alexander (26.32), Kaylee Wheeler (28.44), Christiana Regenauer (23.52), and Lainey Visscher (22.71) went 1:40.99. Kentucky won the event with a time of 1:39.70.

In the men’s 200 medley relay, the Cardinal men took the top two spots with the A-relay team of Mitchell Whyte (22.13), Evgenii Somov (24.35), Nicolas Albiero (20.78) and Andrej Barna (19.65) posted the winning time of 1:26.91 for the Cards. Their teammates Nikos Sofianidis (22.77), Sasha Palazzo (24.40), Haridi Sameh (21.16) and Mihalis Deliyiannis (19.69) were in hot pursuit, touching second in 1:28.03.

“I like the way the group fought and battled through the relays, said Albiero. “Ultimately for us at this stage of the season, that’s what I always talk about with the team. Yes we are focused on today’s meet but there are other things coming. It’s all a part of the progression for us.”

In the 1000 freestyle, Kentucky took the top two spots led by Beth McNeese’s 9.53.94. Maria Sumida was the top Cardinal, touching third in 10:09.92, Sophie Cattermole was fourth in 10:11.68. In the men’s race, Cardinal Ilia Sibirtsev beat the field by almost five seconds, posting the winning time of 9:07.56. Cardinal T.C. Smith was fourth, going 9:18.76, just ahead of Hayden Curley’s 9:20.23.

In the women’s 200 freestyle, UK’s Ali Galyer took top honors with the winning time of 1:47.39. Arina Openysheva was the top Cardinal with the third-place time of 1:48.65. Diana Dunn was fifth in 1:49.93 and Katie Schorr was sixth with a time of 1:52.81. In the men’s race, Wildcat Glen Brown was first, posting a 1:37.54. Colton Paulson was the top UofL swimmer with a third place time of 1:38.12 just ahead of Andrej Barna’s 1:38.20. Sam Steele was fifth with 1:38.47, just edging teammate Michael Eastman’s 1:39.90.

In the women’s 100 backstroke, Kentucky’s Caitlin Brooks touched first in 53.91. Sofie Underdahl was fourth for the Cardinals, boarding a 56.70 just out-touching teammate Kyla Alexander’s 56.77 and Ashlyn Schoof’s 56.86. The Cardinal men went 1-3-4 in their race led by Mitchell Whyte’s NCAA B-Cut time 47.70. Nikos Sofianidis was third (49.20) and Jack Wever was fourth with a 49.38.

The Cardinals took the top two spots in the 100 breast, led by Mariia Astashkina’s winning NCAA B-cut time of 1:01.39 with teammate Morgan Friesen in her wake, boarding a 1:02.70. Kaylee Wheeler was fifth with a 1:04.06. Not to be outdone, the Cardinal men went 1-2 in their race with Evgenii Somov winning in 54.23. UofL’s Sasha Palazzo was second in 55.08. Aaron Parrott was fourth with a 57.41.

In the 200 butterfly, UK took the top three spots with Asia Seidt putting up the fastest time of the field with a 1:58.39. UofL’s Abby Hay was fourth with a time of 2:03.71. Carley Lowe was in fifth place, with a time of 2:04.22. Nicolas Albiero broke away from the field, putting up the winning NCAA B-cut time of 1:44.00, more than two seconds ahead of runner-up Mason Whilby’s 1:46.47. Cardinal Daniel Sos picked up a third place with a time of 1:47.12. Jarrett Jones was fifth in 1:50.69.

The Cardinals went 1-2-4-5 in the women’s 50 freestyle. Lainey Visscher out-dueled teammate Casey Fanz with the Cardinal pair going 22.94 and 23.01 respectively. Arina Openysheva was fourth, stopping the clock in 23.23. Avery Braunecker completed the field, going 23.24 for fifth.

In a wild finish of the men’s 50 freestyle, UK’s Peter Wetzler (20.06) edged Mihalis Deliyiannis (20.18) who just out-touched Haridi Sameh (20.21) for third.

In the women’s 100 freestyle, Arina Openysheva led the 1-3-4 sweep for the Cardinals with the winning time of 50.21. Lainey Visscher was third, posting a 50.68 and Christiana Regenauer touched fourth in 50.87. In the men’s 100 free, UK’s Peter Wetzlar (43.79) just edged Andrej Barna, who touched second in 43.86. Michael Eastman was third in 45.15.

In the 200 backstroke, UK’s Caitlin Brooks took top honors with the winning time of 1:56.64. Sofie Underdahl was fourth as the top Card with a 2:01.81. Daniel Sos won the men’s 200 back, with the winning time of 1:45.89. Jack Wever was third, clocking in at 1:48.72.

UofL went 1-2 in the women’s 200 breaststroke, led by Morgan Friesen, who was into the wall with a 2:13.30. Teammate Mariia Astashkina was in hot pursuit, touching in 2:13.44 for second. Diana Dunn was fifth with a 2:18.82.

Evgenii Somov made it a breaststroke sweep with a win in the 200 with a 2:00.59. Aaron Parrott was fourth in 2:06.46.

In the 500 freestyle, Wildcat Ali Galyer was first in 4:50.63. Maria Sumida was third in 4:58.42. Sophie Cattermole was sixth in 5:04.87 just ahead of Maddie Luther (5:07.57). UofL’s Ilia Sibirtsev was the top finisher in the men’s event with a 4:26.93. T.C. Smith was third, going 4:31.58 and Colton Paulson was fourth in 4:32.84.

Christiana Regenauer notched the win in the 100 fly, with a 54.52 in a dead heat with UK’s Asia Seidt. Nastja Govejsek was third in 54.77. Kelly Tichenor went 56.96 to round out the Cardinal field.

Nicolas Albiero won the 100 butterfly with a time of 47.47. Teammate Nikos Sofianidis was fifth for the Cardinals in 49.15.

Louisville’s Diana Dunn turned in the fastest time in the 200 IM with a 2:03.76 with teammate Maria Sumida touching third in 2:03.84 in a hotly contested finish down the stretch. Abby Hay was sixth with a 2:05.55 and Mariia Astashkina was seventh in 2:05.59.

Arina Openysheva (50.23), Lainey Visscher (49.84), Christiana Regenauer (50.29), and Casey Fanz anchored in 49.96 to combine for 3:20.32 to clinch the women’s 400 freestyle relay in dramatic fashion. Cards edged the Cat’s A-relay, who put up a 3:20.50.

In diving, UK’s Kyndal Knight won the 1-meter board with score of 292.43 edging UofL’s Molly Fears, who put up a 289.53. Michaela Sliney was third with a 267.00. UK’s Mingli Zhang won the 1-meter for the men beating second place finisher Adam Sneden’s 286.43 for UofL. Daniel Pinto was third with a 279.45 and Kivanc Gur was fourth with 278.63.

In 3-meter diving, Louisville’s Molly Fears won with a 307.80. Teammate Abigail Andrews was fourth for the Cards with a 264.45 and Michaela Sliney boarded a 264.30. Mingli Zhang took the 3-meter board as well with a 383.55. UofL’s Daniel Pinto was second, posting a 343.43. Adam Sneden was fourth (277.73) and Kivanc Gur was fifth with a mark of 276.00.

In the the final event of the afternoon, Arina Openysheva (50.23), Lainey Visscher (49.84), Christiana Regenaruer (50.29) and Casey Fanz (49.96) combined for a 3:20.32 to clinch the women’s 400 freestyle relay in dramatic fashion.

For the men, Nicolas Albiero (44.33), Evgenii Somov (44.05), Michael Eastman (44.59) and Andrej Barna (42.91) took second in the men’s 400 freestyle relay in 2:55.88.

“Obviously, we always want to win, especially in a rivalry,” said Albiero. “We’re happy with the men’s results and the women’s side a couple things here and there. We just have to keep learning. Championship mindset in everything that we do. It’s really super exciting. Senior Day is next week and what is to come around championship time. It’s exciting.”