Bulldogs Bounce Back, Topple Tennessee in Knoxville


  • Complete results
    • UGA (M) 172 – UT (M) 128
    • UGA (W) 178 – UT (W) 122
  • Hosted by Tennessee (Knoxville, TN)
  • January 21, 2017
  • 25 yards, dual meet (men, women)
  • Teams’ Records:
    • UGA men (6-1, 3-0 SEC), UGA women (7-1, 4-0 SEC)
    • UT men (2-4, 1-4 SEC), UT women (5-2, 4-1 SEC)


After both Georgia squads were walloped by the Texas Longhorns at home last Friday, the Bulldogs were able to regroup today to sweep SEC rival Tennessee on the road. This was the first meet the UGA women swam after seeing the program’s 103 home meet win streak come to an end. That streak began before many of the Georgia swimmers were born.

Again, the Bulldogs showed that they are good in several events (200 fly and 500 free, in particular), but still have some gaping holes in the lineup to fill (breaststroke for both teams, and the men are still looking for an elite freestyle sprinter). Bauerle appears to continue experimenting with the lineup, as he looks to pull another rabbit out of his magician’s hat at NCAAs. Meanwhile, the championship event schedules for many UGA swimmers—Chase Kalisz, Jay Litherland, Gunnar Bentz, Taylor Dale, Emily Cameron, Rachel Zilinskas, Meaghan Raab, and Kylie Stewart—will remain big question marks until at least the SEC Champs.


The UGA women got off to a rough start with a DQ by their A team in the 200 medley relay, but settled with first through third finishes in the 1000 free (Stephanie Peters, Zilinskas and Meg Finnon, respectively).

Raab took the 200 free (1:46.88), while UGA freshman Meryn McCann finished third with a solid 1:48.10. Stewart won the 100 back (53.51) ahead of Olympian Olivia Smoliga (54.05), while homegrown freshman Lexi Glunn had a nice 100 breaststroke (1:02.61 PB). Raab picked up her second individual win of the day in the 200 breast (2:13.88).

Megan Kingsley took first in the 200 fly (1:57.57), and transfer Chelsea Britt continued to show good form in her first season competing in the SEC. Britt grabbed second in 1:57.99.

Canadian Van Landeghem won the 50 free against a charging Tennessee field in 22.62, and followed up her win in the 50 with another in the 100 free (49.36). Smoliga took second in the 100 in  51.03.

The UGA women went first through fourth in the 500 free, led by Peters in 4:50.55. The Bulldogs then teamed up in the 400 free relay to avenge their loss in the 200 medley relay for the final win of the meet.

For Tennessee, freshman phenom Meghan Small has proven to be worth the hype. She had yet another multi-win meet, taking first in the 200 back (1:55.64) and 200 IM (1:58.31). She also grabbed second behind Raab in the 200 free with an impressive in-season time (1:47.88).

Madeline Banic won the 100 fly for the Vols in 53.31, besting Georgia’s loaded butterfly group.

Another strong event for the Lady Vols was the 50 free, where they finished second through fourth behind Van Landeghem. Both Banic (22.74) and Erika Brown (22.97) were sub-23.

On the springboards, Tennessee’s Rachel Rubadue won the 3-meter and took second in the 1-meter. Georgia’s Olivia Ball took the 1-meter title by just over one point.


The Georgia men did not get a win until the third event, but their depth won out in the end.

Olympians Jay Litherland (1:36.26) and Gunnar Bentz (1:37.67) took first and second in the 200 free. Taylor Dale (47.42) and Javier Acevedo (47.99) went 1-2 in the 100 backstroke. Pace Clark (1:45.17), Mick Litherland (1:48.15) and Powell Brooks (1:50.27) swept the podium in the 200 fly. Clark also took the 100 fly by just two one-hundredths (47.75).

Kalisz took the 100 breastroke (53.57), and Acevedo (1:45.98) and Jay Litherland (1:46.04) went 1-2 in the 200 back. Kalisz returned to take the 200 breast (1:57.35), followed by Bulldog sophomore James Guest in second (1:59.10).

To finish off the meet, Kalisz and Jay Litherland finished 1-2 in the 200 IM, just as they did at the 2016 U.S. Olympic Trials. Kalisz finished in 1:46.71, and Litherland touched in 1:47.86. In the final relay, despite a lack of top 50 free sprinters, the Bulldogs touched 1-2 in the 400 free relay.

The Tennessee men started the meet off red shot. Their sprint prowess was on display in the 200 medley relay, beating Georgia’s A squad by more than two seconds—1:25.64 to 1:27.86. Impressively, the Volunteer men then turned around and went 1-2 in the 1000 free. David Heron won in 9:02.90, followed by Taylor Abbott in 9:10.73.

The Volunteers were also victorious in the 50 free, taking the top two spots. Kyle DeCoursey won (19.54) and Ryan Coetzee grabbed second (20.33).

DeCoursey returned to take the 100 free title in a swift 43.70, and Heron also claimed a second individual event in the 500 free (4:24.76).

Tennessee diver Liam Stone came away with wins in both springboard events. He won the 1-meter with a score of 402.53, and the 3-meter with a score of 392.10.


Courtesy of UGA Athletics:

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – Georgia’s swimming and diving teams concluded the Southeastern Conference portion of their schedule on Saturday with a pair of wins against Tennessee in the Allen Jones Aquatic Center.

The No. 3 Lady Bulldogs (7-1, 4-0) beat the No. 15 Lady Volunteers 178-122, while the No. 5-ranked Bulldogs (6-1, 3-0) posted a 172-128 win against the No. 20 Volunteers. The Georgia women are undefeated in their last 21 conference meets with a 20-0-1 mark dating back to 2013.

“Job well done today,” Georgia head coach Jack Bauerle said. “We were tougher, we didn’t make any silly mistakes and we swam a good meet. Tennessee is a great program with a great coach and we have a lot of respect for them, so it was really great for us to come up here and get a pair of wins.”

Stephanie Peters, Chantal Van Landeghem and Meaghan Raab led the Lady Bulldogs by combining to sweep the freestyle events and earning two individual wins a piece.

Peters took both the 500- and 1,000-yard freestyle, finishing in 4:50.55 and 9:52.21, respectively, while Van Landeghem was the first the reach the wall in both the 50- (22.62) and 100-yard freestyle (49.36). Raab finished first in the 200-yard freestyle (1:46.88) and the 200-yard breaststroke (2:13.88). 

Other individual winners for the Lady Bulldogs included Kylie Stewart in the 100-yard backstroke (53.51), Megan Kinsley in the 200-yard butterfly (1:57.67), and Olivia Ball on the 1-meter springboard (286.80).

Olivia Smoliga, Veronica Burchill, Raab and Van Landeghem combined for a victory in the 400-yard freestyle relay, stopping the clock in 3:19.88. 

On the men’s side, Chase Kalisz won both breaststroke events and the 200-yard individual medley, finishing the 100- in 53.37, the 200-yard breaststroke in 1:57.35 and the 200-yard individual medley in 1:46.71.

Pace Clark followed suit by sweeping the butterfly events, winning the 100- in 47.75 and the 200-yard butterfly in 1:45.17. 

Jay Litherland won the 200-yard freestyle in 1:36.26, Taylor Dale took first in the 100-yard backstroke in 47.42, and Javier Acevedo claimed the 200-yard backstroke in 1:45.98.

Dale, Gunnar Bentz, Clark and Acevedo reached the wall in 2:58.24 to win the 400-yard freestyle relay. 

Georgia will conclude the regular season Saturday, Jan. 28, at Gabrielsen Natatorium against Emory. Georgia’s seniors will be recognized in a pre-meet ceremony.

Courtesy of Tennessee Athletics:

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — The Tennessee swimming and diving team lost to Georgia on Saturday at Allan Jones Intercollegiate Aquatic Center to close out the home regular-season schedule.

Redshirt junior David Heron, junior Liam Stone and sophomore Kyle DeCoursey won two events each in Tennessee’s 172-128 loss to No. 5 Georgia on the men’s side. In the women’s meet, Tennessee won 5 of 16 events but lost 178-122 to the third-ranked Bulldogs.

Freshman Meghan Small led the UT women with victories in the 200-yard backstroke and 200 IM in addition to a second-place finish.

Inside the men’s meet: Heron put together his best dual meet of his career. The open water swimmer from California led a 1-2 finish in the 1,000 freestyle, taking first in 9:02.90 with freshman Taylor Abbott following in 9:10.73.

Later in the meet, Heron won the 500 free in 4:24.76, and junior Sam McHugh finished third (4:25.18).

“He’s not every swum like that with the confidence he had today,” Tennessee head coach Matt Kredich said. “Those two races were pretty dominant, including the 500 free where he won by just a little bit. He was in control the whole time. David was spectacular and coming around at a good time.”

DeCoursey swept the sprint freestyle races for a fifth time this season. He powered the Vols to a 1-2 finish in the 50 freestyle with a season-best time of 19.54 followed by Ryan Coetzee (20.33). He won the 100 freestyle in 43.70.

Stone won both springboard competitions for a fourth time this year, taking first in the 1-meter springboard in 402.53 and the 3-meter competition in 388.20. Sophomore Nicholas Rusek recorded a career-best score of 344.02 to finish third on 1-meter. Inside the women’s meet:In the women’s competition, Small put together another two-win meet for Tennessee, winning the 200 backstroke (1:55.64) — beating out Georgia’s Kylie Stewart by three hundredths — and the 200 IM (1:58.31). She also picked up a second-place finish in the 200 freestyle (1:47.88).

On her senior day, Colleen Callahan booked a victory in the 100 breaststroke (1:02.37).

Sophomore Rachel Rubadue won the women’s 3-meter springboard in 312.61. She was second in the 1-meter springboard with 285.23.

Tennessee opened the meet sweeping the men’s and women’s 200 medley relay, with the women winning in 1:39.01 and the men taking first in 1:25.64.

Up Next: The Vols conclude the regular season next Saturday with a road meet at Florida beginning at 10 a.m. Eastern. After that, the Vols will host the SEC Championships, which runs Feb. 14-18.


Comments from Tennessee head coach Matt Kredich: “There were a really impressive steps that members of our team took forward. Kyle DeCoursey just keeps getting better. He was phenomenal today. I thought Matthew Dunphy made a lot of progress, which was good to see from him. Ryan Coetzee in the 100 fly and 50 free.

“We saw some themes that were really good. We got in a lot of close races with some great swimmers and won our share. That was more true in the second half than the first, we were a little sluggish at the beginning.

“On the women’s side, Meghan Small is really starting to come together and recover from her fall. Our seniors have been great all season and I think today in particular, Colleen Callahan gave us a real lift. Madeline Banic gave us a great lift. She struggled in the fall and is coming around at a great time. I’m happy with where we are. We’re making progress but came up a little short.

Comments from Tennessee diving coach Dave Parrington: “Starting with the men’s side, first of all, it was exciting to see Michael Howell compete in his last home dual meet and got a couple of fifth place finishes but did some really good stuff today. I was very proud of him. Of course the highlight being Liam Stone winning both events. He had an exceptional performance on 1-meter. He threw a new dive on 3-meter, so I’m happy with that. And of course, Nick Rusek did a fantastic job today particularly on 1-meter working his way into a career high. So overall, I’m very pleased with the performance from the men.

“On the women’s side, Rachel Rubadue had a nice day; good win for her on 3-meter. It was also a very close competition against former SEC champion on 1-meter. It was very good to see Sean Meyers back on the boards after some injury issues, and Emily Pelletier was very steady today. I’m very pleased with the steps we took today as we get ready for the SEC tournament.”

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Swim fan from TN
6 years ago

As a swim fan stopped in to watch some Georgia swimmers that we have not seen. Some impressive swims, but our takeaway was that this was one of the most poorly run meets ever witnessed. Referree seemed lost at times, touch pads were inaccurate in the middle of the pool against Georgia, and the very senior officiating crew made a few questionable DQ calls and missed a couple of obvious ones. Hopefully these well intentioned officials are sidelined for upcoming SECs, and UT does standard pre-meet checks of touch pad, clock and scoreboard before each session starts, because the pace of the meet and the repeated issues with timing were excruciating to watch.

bobo gigi
6 years ago

Not fair. Bulldogs had a lot of rest before the meet. Tennessee not.

Reply to  bobo gigi
6 years ago

Tennessee saw very well compared to other meets this year. Perhaps the combination of illness in the Fall contributed. It appears the teams are getting Championship ready for the HOME SEC meet. Go Vols and Lady Vols!!!!!!!

6 years ago

Great title to this article!

Reply to  PKWater
6 years ago

I like it too!!;) almost took that L, but they bounced back.

jay ryan
6 years ago

The men’s contest was one fast meet