Feb. 19, 2014
|4. Texas A&M||296|
|3. Texas A&M||417|
Johnson is responsible for two of the Lady Vols's three medals already. She earned a bronze medal in the 50 Freestyle, thanks to a 21.84 time which beat her career high from last season's NCAA tournament.In the final women's event of the night, Johnson swam the fastest second leg of the field to help pull UT onto the podium in the 200 Freestyle Relay.
Robles made it two medals in two nights, clinching the silver medal once again in the 1-meter competition. After falling out of first place halfway through, his final round dive score of 74.80 pushed him to within .05 of winning gold.
ATHENS, Ga. -- Led by medal-winning efforts by Mauricio Robles in the diving well and Faith Johnson in the pool, Tennessee reached the podium three more times Wednesday at the SEC Swimming and Diving Championships.
Through two full days of competition at Gabrielsen Natatorium, the UT women are in fourth place in the team standings with 312 points while host and defending champion Georgia leads with 577. The UT men are fifth with 289, and Auburn leads with 574.
"This meet is even faster this year, so our kids are having to fight for everything they get, which is great," Tennessee head coach Matt Kredich said. "We finished tonight with some really good relays. Both our men and our women were really fantastic. The cool thing is we're seeing room for improvement as we look ahead to NCAAs as well."
Robles followed up his second-place performance in a close 3-meter springboard competition by earning another silver Wednesday by an even narrower margin. He overcame a sub-50 score on his third dive to finish with a total of 395.20, just 5 hundredths behind winner John Santeiu of Auburn (395.25).
Robles can now turn his attention to Friday's platform competition, an event where he won SEC gold as a freshman in 2012.
"I'm really proud of what he's doing here," Tennessee diving coach Dave Parrington said. "Two seconds over two nights after not being in this competition for two years. He's right in the battle, leaving a few points on the table."
In the pool, Johnson was unable to defend her SEC title in the 50-yard freestyle but had to settle for recording a career-best time instead. She swam 21.67 in the finals to finish third, demonstrating the depth of the conference sprinters this year.
Johnson returned to the medal stand an hour later as part of the 200 freestyle relay team. The Tennessee team of Cherelle Thompson, Johnson, Harper Bruens and Lindsay Gendron finished second in 1:28.37. It was the first SEC medal for Thompson, a native of Trinidad and Tobago.
Freshman Luke Percy swam his first career individual final at SECs, placing sixth from the outside lane in a career-best 19.52.
Tennessee's men and women were well represented in the 200 individual medley with four total swimmers making the finals.
Junior Tristan Slater reached the A final of the 200 IM for the third time in his career. He placed seventh in 1:44.84, a career best by nearly a second.
"It's nice that he belongs there, and he knows he belongs there," Kredich said. "That's a great setup for the 400 IM, which he considers his best event. It's a good sign that he's ready to make a big step up in that event, both here and at NCAAs."
Gendron just missed the A final in the 500 freestyle, but she rebounded to win the B final in a time of 4:39.04, two seconds faster than her morning race. Sophomore Mary Griffith took 12th in 4:41.42, improving her career best by more than 10 seconds.
"Mary Griffith today dropped about 11 seconds from her time in the 500 free, and it looks like she'll make the NCAAs," Kredich said. "It's still kind of new to her. Lindsay had a hiccup this morning, but had a great swim again tonight."
WOMEN'S 500 FREESTYLE
There were no Lady Vols in the A final of the event, but Lindsay Gendron had a nice start to the night. The senior missed the A final by a second, but managed to bounce back and win the B final with a B-cut time of 4:39.04. Teammate Mary Griffith (4:41.42--B-cut) came in fourth in the B Final, while Camryne Morris (4:48.53) came in eighth place in her first career final.
WOMEN'S 200 IM
Anna DeMonte and Amanda Carner both put career-high and NCAA B-cut times this morning, but could not keep the momentum going into the evening final. In the B final, Carner came in fifth place with a time of 1:59.34, while DeMonte (2:00.23) came in seventh place after a Texas A&M disqualification
MEN'S 200 IM
In the first A-cut appearance of the night, Tristan Slater could not catch up to Florida's 1-2 finish, coming in seventh place. His time of 1:44.84 was just over two seconds behind the winning time, but was fast enough to qualify for a B-cut time. Jimmy Dagley (1:47.51) shaved .33 seconds off his preliminary time, coming in fifth place in the C final and also clinching a B-cut time.
WOMEN'S 50 FREESTYLE
Faith Johnson earned Tennessee's first medal of the night, winning the bronze for the Lady Vols with a 21.84 time. That time beat her prior career high of 21.89 from last season's NCAA tournament. Fellow sophomore Harper Bruens (22.57) came in sixth place in the B final, while Cherelle Thompson came in eighth place in the C final with a time of 22.84, less than a second behind first place.
MEN'S 50 FREESTYLE
Luke Percy swam the 7th-fastest time in program history in the preliminaries and beat that mark in the A final, swimming a time of 19.52 to claim sixth place. Troy Tillman swam to a fourth place finish in the B final, thanks to a 19.86 time. In the C Final, Gustav Aberg Ledjstrom, who swam under 20 seconds for the first time in his career in the preliminaries, came in 5th (20.05), while Oystein Hetland came 7th (20.16).
WOMEN'S 200 FREESTYLE RELAY
After a slow start, the Lady Vols clinched the silver medal with an A-Cut time of 1:28.37, coming back to earn second place. After Thompson opened the race for the Lady Vols, Johnson swam the fastest second leg of the race (21.55). Bruens and Lindsay Gendron finished off the relay for Tennessee, which got their second medal of the night.
MEN'S 200 FREESTYLE RELAY
In a very competitive race, the quartet of Percy, Sam Rairden, Aberg Ledjstrom and Tillman swam in at 1:17.11, good for fourth place overall. This time qualified the foursome for an NCAA A-cut, as well as beat their prior high time from November.
MEN'S 1-METER SPRINGBOARD
A 74.80 score in the final round jumped Maurico Robles onto the podium, earning the first men's medal on the night for UT. The silver medal is Robles's second of the tournament, having earned the silver in 3-meter diving last night. His total score of 395.20 was .05 behind first place.