2021 Women’s SEC Championships: Day 2 Prelims Live Recap

SEC – WOMEN SWIMMING & DIVING + MEN’S DIVING

  • Wednesday, February 17 – Saturday, February 20, 2021
  • W Swimming: Gabrielsen Natatorium – Athens, GA (Eastern Time Zone)
  • W&M Diving: Mizzou Aquatics Center – Columbia, MO (Central Time Zone)
  • Defending Champion: Tennessee (1x) (2020 results)
  • Live results
  • Live Video – SEC Network
  • Championship Central
  • Psych Sheets (UPDATED)

This morning will be the first full prelims session of the 2021 Women’s SEC Championships. Last night, Alabama and Kentucky won a relay each, while Auburn and Georgia stumbled with DQ’s in the 200 medley relay.

THURSDAY PRELIMS HEAT SHEETS

500 FREE – PRELIMS

  • SEC meet record – 4:33.10, Brittany Maclean (Georgia) 2016
  • 2020 NCAA invite time – 4:41.20
  • 2020 champion – Courtney Harnish (Georgia), 4:36.40

Top 8

  1. Kristen Stege (Tennessee) – 4:39.35
  2. Peyton Palsha (Arkansas) – 4:39.94
  3. Courtney Harnish (Georgia) – 4:40.57
  4. Elise Bauer (Florida) – 4:41.26
  5. Kensey McMahon (Alabama) – 4:42.10
  6. Tylor Mathieu (Florida) – 4:43.25
  7. Jillian Barczyk (Georgia) – 4:43.43
  8. Olivia Anderson (Georgia) – 4:43.44

Tennessee sophomore Kristin Stege was out fast in 1:49.21 in heat five, the East Carolina transfer already making a name for herself in the conference distance ranks. She would go on to win the heat with a 4:39.35, beating Alabama junior Kensey McMahon (4:42.10) who finished third in this race last year. For Stege, that’s a lifetime best by four seconds, and she’s come a long way since her high school best of 4:58.89 just two years ago.

Peyton Palsha of Arkansas and Courtney Harnish of Georgia went head-to-head in the final heat of the 500 free prelims, both out in 1:49-mids at the 200. Palsha was able to get under 4:40, going 4:39.94 for her third sub-4:40 swim ever, while Harnish will lurk in third (4:40.57), not showing her full potential as the defending champion (4:36.40).

Florida freshman Elise Bauer had another huge swim, clocking a lifetime best of 4:41.26 to snag the fourth spot in the A-final. She was 4:47.34 in high school, and 4:44.76 mid-season before shaving an additional 3.5 seconds this morning.

In the first circle-seeded heat, Florida sophomore Tylor Mathieu battled with Georgia sophomore Jillian Barczyk and Auburn junior Emily Hetzer. Mathieu was 4:43.25 to get the win, ahead of Barczyk (4:43.43) and Hetzer (4:43.63). For Barczyk, that’s a lifetime best, while Hetzer was off of her prelim-leading 4:38.56 from the 2020 SEC Champs. Mathieu and Barczyk both get into the A-final after swimming in the C-final last year, knocking Hetzer down to ninth and out of the A-final.

Florida and Georgia are the big winners in terms of getting swimmers into scoring position– Florida has 2/2/2 in the A/B/C finals and Georgia has 3/1/0. Tennessee and Kentucky also had strong showings, as the Lady Vols have 1/2/0 and the Wildcats 0/2/2.

200 IM – PRELIMS

  • SEC meet record – 1:51.62, Meghan Small (Tennessee) 2019
  • 2020 NCAA invite time – 1:57.31
  • 2020 champion – Meghan Small (Tennessee), 1:52.14

Top 8

  1. Zoie Hartman (Georgia) – 1:54.35
  2. Danielle Dellatorre (Georgia) – 1:55.29
  3. Vanessa Pearl (Florida) – 1:55.40
  4. Lauren Poole (Kentucky) – 1:55.56
  5. Alexis Yager (Tennessee) – 1:55.88
  6. Izzy Gati (Kentucky) – 1:56.25
  7. Bailey Bonnett (Kentucky) – 1:56.40
  8. Hannah Ownbey (Auburn) – 1:56.73

Georgia sophomore Zoie Hartman is the top seed by a good margin going into tonight’s final. She won the final heat this morning at 1:54.35, winning her heat by over a second ahead of Tennessee’s Alexis Yager (1:55.88).

In heat seven, Danielle Dellatorre of Georgia and Lauren Poole of Kentucky battled to the wall, both going bests as Dellatorre won in 1:55.29 ahead of Poole’s 1:55.56. For Poole, it was her first time under 1:57. The heat after, Vanessa Pearl of Florida dropped a 1:55.40 for the win in the penultimate heat.

Kentucky looked very good here, with Poole, Izzy Gati (1:56.25) and Bailey Bonnett (1:56.50) all into the A-final and Sophie Sorenson (1:56.92) in the B-final.

Auburn freshman Hannah Ownbey dropped almost two full seconds to get all the way up into the A-final, a key swim for the Tigers.

Alabama had a couple big initial heat wins, with freshman Diana Petkova taking heat one (1:58.13) and junior Cat Wright picking up heat two (1:57.67). Also dropping a big swim was Kentucky sophomore Jodi Ogle, an East Carolina transfer, who dropped over two seconds from her old best with a 1:59.13 to win heat five and nab the last spot in the C-final.

Kentucky and Georgia are the big movers in this event. UK has 3 up, 1 mid, 1 down, while UGA has 2 up, 3 mid and 1 down.

50 FREE – PRELIMS

  • SEC meet record – 21.03, Erika Brown (Tennessee) 2020
  • 2020 NCAA invite time – 22.21
  • 2020 champion – Erika Brown (Tennessee), 21.03

Top 8

  1. Katie Mack (Florida) – 21.82
  2. Kalia Antoniou (Alabama) – 21.91
  3. Gabi Fa’amausili (Georgia) – 21.99
  4. Maxine Parker (Georgia) – 22.07
  5. Megan Keil (Mizzou) – 22.09
  6. Cora Dupre (Alabama) – 22.12
  7. Bailey Grinter (Tennessee) – 22.13
  8. Emily Barclay/Kobie Melton (Arkansas) – 22.18 *TIE*

Katie Mack of Florida, an NC State transfer, destroyed her old best of 22.34 en-route to a huge 21.82 in heat eight of ten. She leads the way going into tonight’s final.

Blasting a 21.91 out of lane eight in heat one (with a NT entry), Alabama’s Kalia Antoniou rocked a 21.91 to easily get into the A-final tonight. Her old best was 22.11, and she nearly broke the Alabama school record of 21.84 held by Bailey Scott. Antoniou was an A-finalist in the 100 free last year at this meet, but only made the B-final in this race.

Alabama looked good here, with IU transfer Cora Dupre also getting into the A-final at 22.09, while Georgia again put two swimmers up between Gabi Fa’Amausili (21.99) and freshman Maxine Parker (22.07).

Mizzou, Tennessee and Arkansas each got one swimmer into this A-final, with #2 seed Megan Keil for Mizzou, Tennessee’s Bailey Grinter and Arkansas’s Emily Barclay and Kobie Melton tying.

Sarah Thompson, the top seed at 21.76, fell to the B-final with a 22.22, a big blow to Mizzou.

Alabama goes 2/1/1, Georgia 2/0/1, Tennessee 1/2/1, Florida 1/2/0, Mizzou 1/1/3 and Arkansas 1/1/0. Kentucky had no scorers after big showings in the previous two events.

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VFL
7 months ago

Stege!! Was hoping to get all three of our girls in the A final but Claire and Amanda a little off. Big swim for Kristen though. Let’s go lady vols!!

tea rex
7 months ago

Why was Stege not on Tennessee’s 800 free relay? They had 3 1:46s.

VFL
Reply to  tea rex
7 months ago

Hindsight says she probably should’ve been. Natalie has been 1:45 though and Trude has been rock solid for us. Would have imagined her in contention with Claire for that last spot.

PLEASE HELP
7 months ago

Is it possible to contact the folks doing the livesteam and request that they record from somewhere other than behind the crowd in the stands? With NO SPECTATORS allowed at this meet, we were hoping to at least get a view of the entire pool for the livestream. There is no visibility to lanes 1 & 2 and lane 3 is spotty. Please help SwimSwam!

Admin
Reply to  PLEASE HELP
7 months ago

Will pass it along.

PLEASE HELP
Reply to  Braden Keith
7 months ago

Thank you so much!

Ghost
Reply to  Braden Keith
7 months ago

And maybe have the swimmers not wave to camera every time they go by! They are in college but acting like middle schoolers!

I do think the athletes are doing a great job of masking up!

Admin
Reply to  Ghost
7 months ago

I know that this was addressed.

ESPN will be there for Friday finals and Saturday, so that should improve the camera situation.

Tara Bauer
Reply to  PLEASE HELP
7 months ago

agree!!great request!!

Hswimmer
7 months ago

Thompson missing A heat, that’s what happens when you wear tech suits all year

HOYA13
Reply to  Hswimmer
7 months ago

The curse of the swimswam article picture continues…

Confused
Reply to  Hswimmer
7 months ago

How does wearing tech suits in season affect your end of season abilities? Or is it more of not living up to expectations?

Admin
Reply to  Confused
7 months ago

Wearing tech suits all year also means she’s already qualified for NCAAs.

Hswimmer
Reply to  Braden Keith
7 months ago

Could be even faster now though is the point. It’s pointless to wear it in dual meets.

El Primo
Reply to  Hswimmer
7 months ago

You must live a wonderful life. Creating demeaning and diminishing comments about a hard working athlete. Its really pathetic.

Hswimmer
Reply to  El Primo
7 months ago

Just stated a fact.

Ghost
Reply to  El Primo
7 months ago

I dont think it was a demeaning remark! I agree but I think we have old school beliefs! I think more teams wore suits in dual meets this year because they didn’t know if there would be a next meet! Also many teams “suit up” for a practice every week so if good enough for going off blocks in practice, then why not wear them in a dual meet?!?

Hswimmer
Reply to  Confused
7 months ago

Nothing to do with expectations. You train in a practice suit, dual meets are basically practicing your race for the end of season meet. Then you do a championship meet or mid-season meet, where you wear a tech suit. Not rocket science

swimapologist
Reply to  Hswimmer
7 months ago

You’ve repeated a maxim, and a trite one at that, but you’ve given no explanation for it.

You’ve basically just said “because I said so,” but in way more words.

Distanceswammer
Reply to  Hswimmer
7 months ago

I’d give a counter-argument to this and say that racing in a tech suit pre-taper is important to get used to turns and race pace feel. In college, especially with COVID, every race is an opportunity to go fast and practice for the end of the season, so why not try and go fast every time? When I was in college, we used to sometimes suit up at practice too…

Confused
Reply to  Hswimmer
7 months ago

Wouldn’t you want to practice racing in what you would be competing in at the highest level/end of the season?

The Original Tim
Reply to  Hswimmer
7 months ago

Counterpoint, admittedly as a Masters swimmer way past my age group days…I find racing in a tech suit to be very valuable in season. I train in a drag suit and always wear a tech suit at in season meets, usually the tech suit I bought for the previous season’s USMS Nationals.

There’s a marked difference in every aspect of my races when I wear a tech suit vs when I don’t wear a tech suit–different body position, better glides off the wall, etc. In my 200 back, for example, I regularly take 1 stroke less per lap with a tech suit vs no tech suit, and if I didn’t practice racing in a tech suit in season that would… Read more »

Confused
Reply to  Confused
7 months ago

Nobody has been able to tell me how suiting up in season makes you do worse at the end of the year yet I’m getting downvotes. I am genuinely curious as this season my team has done a mix of suited and unsuited dual meets. Sure, you might not see as big of drops at the end of the year but getting race practice in a tech suit seems helpful. I’d love to hear how it is a BAD thing rather than talking bad about a program for doing something different. Thanks!

No X please
Reply to  Hswimmer
7 months ago

Ignorant comment, she missed her turn and 1 footed the push off. Now when she comes back tonight in finals and nails it will you have the fortitude to admit your foolish statement.

Partial Observer
Reply to  Hswimmer
7 months ago

This statement didn’t hold up for very long…. 21.57 in finals. But yeah, suits or whatever….

Swimmom
7 months ago

Was hoping for better views of all of the lanes!!! Can someone put in a request to improve the viewing??!!!

I get it that the kids want to cheer for their team.. but come on!! Lane 1 is impossible to see!

Mizzwho?
7 months ago

Wow the swimswam photo curse strikes again

swimfan210_
7 months ago

Great swimming from Stege and Palsha. After a 200 free PB can Harnish bring the fireworks in finals? Looking forward to a good race.
Hartman tying her seed time to the hundredth! Teammate Dellatorre has been having a great season, can UGA go 1-2?
Transfer working out well for Mack. Also Dupre on the way to returning to 2020 form with a 22.1 in prelims. Was 21.9 last year. Swimswam photo curse working again with Thompson missing finals.

Captain Ahab
7 months ago

Wish ole Miss and Mississippi State University had swimming.

About Karl Ortegon

Karl Ortegon

Karl Ortegon studied sociology at Wesleyan University in Middletown, CT, graduating in May of 2018. He began swimming on a club team in first grade and swam four years for Wesleyan.

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