Nov. 21, 2008
Jamie Saffer, sophomore Aleksa Akerfelds and freshman Jenny Connolly on Friday night, the 12th-ranked Tennessee women's swimming team will take a 35-point lead into the final day of the 2008 Tennessee Swimming Invitational tomorrow at the Allan Jones Intercollegiate Aquatic Center.
Tennessee leads with 637 points, while No. 25 Virginia Tech is close behind with 602 points. Kentucky is a distant third with 407.
"I thought we put a lot of emotion into tonight's swim," Lady Vol head swimming coach Matt Kredich said. "We were a little flat in the morning but the team did a good job of coming back at night. Not only were we competitive, we were also technically very sound."
Saffer captured the 100y breast in an NCAA B cut performance of 1:02.05. Classmate Alex Barsanti placed second in a career-best time of 1:03.03, while sophomore Samara Gelb finished fourth in a season-best time of 1:03.91.
Akerfelds won the 400y IM in 4:19.87, leading a 1-2-3-4 sweep by the Lady Vols in the event. Following Akerfelds were freshman Samara Gelb (4:21.85), freshman Tori Richmond (4:24.53) and senior Sarah McCall (4:26.35).
Connolly won the 100y back in 54.72, leading a 1-2 Lady Vol finish. Sophomore Morgan Farrell was right behind in a season-best 55.42. Connolly also swam a time of 54.57 in the prelims. Both her times are under the NCAA B qualifying standard. Additionally, Connolly finished third in the 100y fly in 54.83.
Virginia Tech's Megan Newell won the 100y fly in 53.96.
Connolly, Saffer and Farrell combined with senior Brittany Nauta to win the 400y medley relay in 3:42.18.
Senior Carly Mathes placed second in the 200y free with a time of 1:50.23. Virginia Tech's Kelly deMarrais won the event in 1:48.66.
"It was great to end the meet with a relay win," Kredich said. "Several swimmers had season-best times and just about everybody did two events. I'm really happy with how we swam tonight."
In the 1-meter competition held today at the Allan Jones Diving Invitational, Lady Vols Gabbie Trudeau (263.50), Staley McCartney (245.45) and Jodie McGroarty (240.45) finished 3-4-5. McGroarty had the best Lady Vol score of the day in the prelims, scoring 268.95 to qualify for the NCAA Zone Championships.
"Today was an up and down day for each of the Lady Vol divers," Diving coach Dave Parrington said. "Each had their share of positive results. Jodie McGroarty was encouraging with her afternoon performance, but wasn't able to put it together at night. I was happy to see Gabbie Trudeau step up in the evening. Overall, we have some really great things to build on."
The diving picks up again tomorrow at 1 p.m. with the prelims of the platform.
The 2008 Tennessee Swimming Invitational ends tomorrow. Prelims begin at 10 a.m. and finals will be at 6 p.m.