2017 WOMEN’S NCAA CHAMPIONSHIPS
- Wednesday, March 15 – Saturday, March 18
- IUPUI Natatorium – Indianapolis, IN
- Prelims 10AM/Finals 6PM (Eastern Time)
- Defending Champion: Georgia (results)
- Championship Central
- Psych Sheet
- Live stream: Wednesday/Thursday Prelims & Finals, Friday/Saturday Prelims / Friday/Saturday finals on ESPN3
- Event Previews
- Live Results
For the first time in program history, the Florida Gators went scoreless at the women’s NCAA Swimming and Diving Championship. A young Gators’ squad of 13 women, including 7 freshmen, traveled to the meet. While they walked away with a handful of top 30 finishers, the Gators were unable to get on the scoreboard throughout the 4-day meet.
Throughout the history of their program, the Gators have never finished lower than 20th at the NCAA Championship meet, which occurred in 1997. They’ve also never scored fewer than 58 points, which came with their 19th place finish at the 2000 NCAA Championships.
At the 2010 NCAA Championships, the Florida Gators, behind legendary collegian Gemma Spofforth, won the NCAA title by 2.5 points over Stanford. In the 7 years since, Florida has dropped to 0 points, while Stanford now stands as the best collegiate program in the country.
Florida’s drop came in stages. In the years after their title win, they hovered around the bottom half of the top 10. They then fell to 19th at the 2016 NCAA Championships last season.
Florida’s finishes at the NCAA Championships Over 10 Years
- 2007 – 7th, 203 points
- 2008 – 6th, 277.5 points
- 2009 – 7th, 239.5 points
- 2010 – CHAMPIONS, 382 points
- 2011 – 7th, 226 points
- 2012 – 10th, 160 points
- 2013 – 6th, 305 points
- 2014 – 6th, 239 points
- 2015 – 9th, 129 points
- 2016 – 19th, 63.5 points
- 2017 – NF, 0 points
4 Florida teams that finished higher than the Gators at NCAAs: Florida St., Florida International, Miami, and Florida Gulf Coast.
It’s worth noting that there were several adversities for the Florida women to overcome this season, including not being able to train or compete in their home facility while the Stephen C. O’Connell center was being renovated. They were also in their first season without former Associate Women’s Head Coach Martyn Wilby, who resigned from the position last May. Their roster was heavily made up of underclassmen, who hadn’t yet experienced the grueling schedule and pressure of an SEC or NCAA Championship meet.
But still – with the NCAA Championships coming up next week, the Florida men seem to have thrived in spite of similar challenges.
The Florida roster has struggled to maintain stability from year-to-year. After graduating a senior class of 9 last season, the Gators had just 3 in 2017. Their class of 2018, meanwhile, shrank from 7 to just 4, and their class of 2019. They lost 3 from their class of 2020 as well.
“It’s been a long week,” said head coach Gregg Troy in a press release. “We certainly weren’t as good as what we wanted to be point-wise, but we got a lot of experience as a really young group. I think it’s going to pay off big for them in the future. We’ve just got to go back and reevaluate and see where we are moving forward.”
Head Coach Gregg Troy will now have 3 more years to work with the several freshmen who qualified for the NCAA meet. They’ll return next season with the valuable experience of competing at NCAAs. The team also gets a sure-fire NCAA scorer in Hungarian Liliana Szilagyi, who didn’t compete this year in her freshman season. She was an Olympic finalist in both the 100 and 200 fly and is one of the best junior swimmers anywhere in the world.
For now, however, the focus turns to the men’s meet, which will take place this week back in Indianapolis, where Caeleb Dressel and the Florida men will shoot for a fourth consecutive top-5 finish.