To conclude the Tennessee men’s swimming and diving preseason training, the Orange team triumphed Friday over the White team, after losing last year’s exhibition. Orange slid by the White at the UT Student Aquatic Center, by a score of 147-146.
Despite Orange’s exciting win, head coach John Trembley felt that the competition was inadequate to preseason expectations.
“The performances today did not match the training that we have had,” Trembley said. “I expected more enthusiasm throughout the competition. The last event was exciting and we had some great performances, but we were mentally lackluster and sloppy. All in all, if a head coach is happy with an intrasquad meet, there is something wrong with him. So, I am not happy, but I did expect expected to be little more pleased than I am. And as I say after intrasquad meet every year, we have much to do, but we have a lot more to do than usual after today’s meet."
Some swimming highlights included senior Octavio Alesi winning the 50 and 100 freestyles while freshman Geoffrey Sanders topped the 1000 freestyle and 200 butterfly competitions. Other highlight winners were junior Nolan Morrell in the 500 freestyle, Stephen Fortney in the 200 I.M. and Brad Craig in the 200 breaststroke. After sitting out last year, Jonas Persson captured first in the 200 freestyle.
Although Trembley suggested his swimmers did not perform up to par, diving coach Dave Parrington was rather pleased with the divers.
“Actually, today on the diving end of the competition, there were a lot more positives than negatives,” Parrington said. “It was a good gauge to see what we need to have done before our dual meet against Louisville. After all of our training up to this point, I was pretty proud of how we performed.”
Parrington mentioned other surprises on the one- and three- meter boards.
“I think Sean [Letsinger] really helped out the orange team today in their victory,” Parrington said. “And, as for Chris Davis, it you took a look at where he was at this point last year compared to where he stands today, he has made phenomenal improvement. In fact, you might not even believe it was the same diver. He obviously still has a lot to work on, but he’ll walk competitively into some meets now where, a year ago, he had very little chance to be competitive. After a season’s training, he might even have a chance to be competitive at the conference championships.”
The Vols kick off the regular season schedule a week from Saturday (Oct. 20) at Louisville. The meet begins at 11 a.m. in the Ralph R. Wright Natatorium.