2019 SEC Championships Day 4 Prelims Live Recap

by Robert Gibbs 6

February 22nd, 2019 College, SEC

2019 SOUTHEASTERN CONFERENCE SWIMMING & DIVING CHAMPIONSHIPS

There wasn’t any one clear favorite for either the men or the women coming into this meet, and none has emerged through three days of competition, although the teams likely to vie for the title seem to be pull ahead of the rest of the pack. Texas A&M has separated themselves a bit on the women’s side, sporting a 57-point lead heading into today, but Florida and Tennessee remain within striking distance. Florida and Missouri are neck-and-neck on the men’s side, while A&M, Georgia, and Alabama sit quite a bit further back and appear to be vying for 3rd at this point.

Two of top four seeds in the women’s 200 fly are Georgia freshmen: Dakota Luther and Olivia Carter. Another Bulldog, Camden Murphy, is the top seed in the men’s 200 fly. Missouri’s Haley Hynes, who had the fastest split in the 200 medley relay Tuesday night, tops the 100 back, but but only 0.01s over Kentucky’s Asia Seidt. It should be another tight race in the men’s 100 back, where Tennessee’s Matthew Garcia, Alabama’s Zane Waddell, and Missouri’s Nick Alexander are only separated by 0.03s. Nikol Popov tops the women’s 100 breast by 0.5s, and another Volunteer, Matthew Dunphy, tops the men’s 100 breast.

Women’s 200 Fly

  1. Olivia Carter (UGA) / Dakota Luther (UGA) – 1:54.46
  2. (tie)
  3. Jing Quah (Texas A&M) – 1:55.19
  4. Taylor Pike (Texas A&M) – 1:55.70
  5. Georgia Marris (Florida) – 1:55.94
  6. Haley McInerny (Kentucky) – 1:56.04
  7. Izzy Gati (Kentucky) – 1:56.06
  8. Caitlin Casazza (UGA) – 1:56.20

Georgia is probably out of title contention at this point, but if they are going to work themselves back into the conversation, this would be the event where that run could begin. The Bulldogs have a long history of success in this event, and sure enough, they put three swimmers into tonight’s A-final. Freshmen Olivia Carter and Dakota Luther led the way, swimming neck-and-neck for most of the final heat, and ultimately touching exactly together, both with a time of 1:54.46. They’ll be joined by Bulldog senior Caitlin Casazza, who took 8th with a 1:56.20.

The Aggies, however, held their own in this event, putting up two women — Jing Quah (1:55.19) and Taylor Pike (1:55.70). Kentucky also got two women into the top eight, with Haley McInerny (1:56.04) and Izzy Gati (1:56.06) putting up the 6th and 7th fastest times of the morning.

Florida got a 1:55.94 from Georgia Marris, while Tennessee, another team still possibly in the title hunt, didn’t get anyone in the top eight after #5 seed Meghan Small declared a false start.

Men’s 200 Fly

  1. Camden Murphy (UGA) – 1:42.18
  2. Fynn Minuth (South Carolina) – 1:42.24
  3. Maxime Rooney (Florida) – 1:42.32
  4. Angel Martinez (Texas A&M) – 1:42.58
  5. Micah Slaton (Missouri) – 1:42.80
  6. Erge Gezmis (Florida) – 1:43.36
  7. Marc Hinawi (Tennesee) – 1:43.66
  8. Santiago Grassi (Auburn) – 1:43.85

Top-seeded Camden Murphy swam to the fastest time of the morning, although the Georgia sophomore should have a couple men pushing him tonight, as the 2nd and 3rd swimmers were right behind him. South Carolina’s Fynn Minuth, the defending champion, posted the 2nd-fastest time of the morning in 1:42.24, and Florida’s Maxime Rooney, who won the 100 fly last night with the fastest time in the nation, was 3rd in 1:42.32. That’s a new best time for the Florida junior, who was 1:43.11 last year at SECs, but seems to be focusing on this event a bit more this year.

In terms of the team competition, Florida had the best showing in this event, as Rooney will be joined by Erge Gezmis in tonight’s final. Missouri, Tennessee, Texas A&M and Auburn each put one man into the top eight as well.

Women’s 100 Back

  1. Sherridon Dreesel (Florida) – 50.93
  2. Alyssa Tetzloff (Auburn) – 50.94
  3. Asia Seidt (Kentucky) – 51.32
  4. Erin Falconer (Auburn) – 51.43
  5. Haley Hynes (Missouri) – 52.20
  6. Emma Ball (Florida) – 52.28
  7. Rhyan White (Alabama) – 52.57
  8. Sarah Thompson (Missouri) – 52.63

We got a pair of smokin’-fast swims this morning, as Sherridon Dressel and Alyssa Tetzloff moved to 2nd and 3rd in the nation by going 50.93 and 50.94. That puts both just ahead of Texas’s Claire Adams (50.95) and behind only Wisconsin’s Nelson Beata (49.67).

Florida and Auburn each got another swimmer into the top eight, Erin Falconer putting up a 51.43 for Auburn and Emma Ball going 52.28 for Florida.

Asia Seidt of Kentucky, who won this event last year with a 50.86, was 3rd this morning with a 51.43, and top-seeded Haley Hynes of Missouri, who had the fastest leadoff leg in the 200 medley relay Tuesday night, will also be in tonight’s A-final.

Men’s 100 Back

  1. Zane Waddell (Alabama) – 45.21
  2. Joey Reilman (Tennessee) / Kacper Stokowski (Florida)- 45.47
  3. (Tie)
  4. Bayley Main (Florida) – 45.66
  5. Daniel Hein (Missouri) – 45.79
  6. Nick Alexander (Missouri) – 45.96
  7. Shaine Casas (Texas A&M) – 45.98
  8. Javier Acevedo (UGA) – 46.01

After swimming the 2nd-fastest time ever in the 50 back Tuesday night, it’s not surprising to see Alabama’s Zane Waddell lead the way this morning. The Alabama junior put up a 45.21 to take the top see heading into tonight. That’s a new personal best time for Waddell, and the 4th-fastest time in Division I this year. Tennesee’s Joey Reilman and Florida’s Kacper Stokowski tied for the 2nd-fastest time of the morning with a 45.47 each. Florida put two up, thanks to Bayley Main‘s 45.66, and Missouri did the same, with Daniel Hein (45.79) and Nick Alexander (45.96) taking the 5th and 6th spots.

The Aggies got an A-final swim from Shaine Casas (45.98), and Georgia’s Javier Acevedo, who was under 45 at last year’s NCAAs, but has been hurt much of this season, just made it into the top eight with a 46.01.

Women’s 100 Breast

  1. Nikol Popov (Tennessee) – 58.62
  2. Anna Belousova (Texas A&M) – 59.16
  3. Summer Spradley (LSU) – 59.24
  4. Justin Macfarlane (Alabama) – 59.64
  5. Bailey Bonnett (Kentucky) – 59.88
  6. Kylie Powers (Texas A&M) – 59.93
  7. Sofia Carnevale (UGA) – 1:00.06
  8. Olivia Paskulin (LSU) – 1:00.10

Nikol Popov of Tennessee swam shaved 0.21s off her personal best to post the fastest time this morning and move up to #3 in the nation this season (well, at least until Sophie Hansson just popped a 57.95 at ACCs). Anna Belousova of Texas A&M also swam a season-best time of 59.16, as Texas A&M put two women in the top eight.

LSU got their first A-finalists of the day, with Summer Spradley taking 3rd with a 59.24, and Olivia Paskulin taking 8th with 1:00.10.

Men’s 100 Breast

  1. Caleb Hicks (Missouri) – 51.87
  2. Laurent Bams (Alabama) – 51.96
  3. Itay Goldfaden (South Carolina) – 51.99
  4. Marco Guarante (Florida) – 52.36
  5. Tommy Brewer (Auburn) – 52.51
  6. Jordan O’Brien (Missouri) – 52.52
  7. Michael Houlie (Tennessee) / Benjamin Walker (Texas A&M) – 52.61
  8. (Tie)

It was a barrier-busting morning in this event, as the top three men all went under 52 seconds, with it being the first sub-52 swim every for all three men. Missouri’s Caleb Hicks led the way, dropping 0.7s off his personal best time to take the top seed with a 51.87. Alabama’s Laurent Bams improved his personal best from a  52.73 to a 51.96, and South Carolina’s Itay Goldfaden went from a 52.36 to a. 51.99.

Florida junior Marco Guarante has started to emerge this year, and he put up the 4th-fastest time of the morning with a 52.36. Missouri topped Florida’s one A-finalist thanks to a 52.52 by Jordan O’Brien, as the team battle between Florida and Missouri continues to look like it’ll be an incredibly close race right up until he end.

No teams besides Missouri had more than one in the top eight, as Auburn (Tommy Brewer), Michael Houlie (Tennessee), and Benjamin Walker (Texas A&M) will round out tonight’s A-final.

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TAK

I think Olivia Carter (UGA) / Dakota Luther (UGA) – 1:45.46 should be 1:54.46

Captain Ahab

You had to go 46.01 to make back for finals in the men’s 100 yard backstroke. These athletes are incredible!

Aquajosh

Florida’s men did exactly what they needed to this morning. Everyone who swam made it into scoring position, and all but one are A or B final swims. Stroke 200s are their bread and butter, so if they lead after tonight, they should be able to take it home. They’re really fighting to keep that streak alive with mostly underclassmen, and it’s awesome to see the freshmen step up at such a high-pressure meet.

JP input is too short

Are stroke 200s Florida’s “bread and butter” compared to this year’s Mizzou team? Those Mizzou 200 back and breast groups look fantastic, if their other swims this weekend are any indication.

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