2018 GEORGIA TECH INVITE
The Florida women showed immense depth in the 400 IM, taking up six of the ten A final spots as well as the top spot. Vanessa Pearl was quickest, going 4:06.89 as the only person under 4:10. Hannah Burns (4:11.09), Mabel Zavaros (4:11.38), Savanna Faulconer (4:11.66), Kelly Fertel (4:12.81), and Leah Braswell (4:12.99) took up 3rd through 7th, while South Carolina’s Emma Barksdale took 2nd in 4:10.27.
Pearl took not one, but two top seeds going into tonight’s finals. She was 1:00.69 in the 100 breast, the only Florida woman under 1:02, with Florida State’s Nina Kucheran close behind at 1:00.80. Emma Ball had a big morning for the Gators, clocking a 52.17 to lead the field in the 100 back.
Joelle Vereb, the do-everything sprinter from Virginia Tech, was 52.49 in the 100 fly, the only finisher under 53. Auburn got on the board with Erin Falconer‘s 1:46.19, while GT’s Iris Wang was 2nd and Auburn first-year Emily Hetzer, who broke 4:40 for the first time in the 500 last night, clocked a strong 1:46.91 in the 200 free for a PR.
Florida put four men into the 400 IM A final, led by Grant Sanders (3:46.04) and Kieran Smith (3:46.04). Third was Caio Pumputis at 3:49.61, but he’s been on fire this weekend so look for him to be more competitive at the top tonight. Pumputis did get a top seed later in the session, going 52.56 in the 100 breast as the only swimmer under 53.
Pumputis wasn’t the only bright spot for Georgia Tech, who put up a massive upset win in the 400 medley last night. Rodrigo Correia edged out the field with a 46.49 in the 100 back, just ahead of Alabama’s Zane Waddell (46.55).
Kanoa Kaleoaloha led the way in the 100 fly, going 46.14 as Waddell again settled for 2nd in 46.33.