Ilia Sibirtsev Rips 8:46.07 1000 Free School Record As Louisville Sweeps Kentucky

by Sean Griffin 4

January 28th, 2024 ACC, News, Previews & Recaps, SEC

Louisville vs. Kentucky

  • January 27, 2024
  • Ralph Wright Natatorium
    • Louisville, Kentucky
  • SCY (25 yards)
  • Live Results
  • Result also available on Meet Mobile: “Louisville vs Kentucky”
  • Team Scores
    • Women: Louisville 210 – Kentucky 90
    • Men: Louisville 209.5 – Kentucky 89.5

The Kentucky Wildcats made the quick one-hour drive to face off with the Cardinals on Saturday. Louisville walked away victorious for both the men and the women, but both teams showed some very promising results heading into championship season. It appears that most swimmers wore technical suits for this competition.

Men’s Recap

The Louisville men made a statement during the first event of the day, placing 1st, 2nd, and 3rd in the 200 medley relay. The winning team of Dalton Lowe (21.18), Denis Petrashov (23.64), Charlie Crush (20.65), and Matias Santiso (19.37) touched in 1:24.84 for the win, while the “B” and “C” teams touched in 1:26.65 and 1:27.24, respectively.

The 1000 free featured perhaps the swim of the day, as Ilia Sibirtsev of Louisville blew away the field en route to a school record. His final time of 8:46.07 not only cleared the field by well over 10 seconds, but it eclipsed the previous school record of 8:49.64 (Marcelo Acosta) from 2018. Sibirtsev owned a previous best time of 8:56.19 in the event, so he made over a 10 second drop at this meet. Sibirtsev would double up with another win in the 500 free, where he finished in 4:17.80. Sibirtsev will be racing at the upcoming Doha World Championships, as he recently changed his country affiliation from Russia to Uzbekistan.

Cardinal sophomore Jackson Millard swept the backstroke events, winning the 100 in 46.91 and the 200 in 1:42.22. He also added a 2nd place finish in the 200 IM, hitting the wall in 1:46.00. Both backstroke swims from Millard represent new best times, and set him up to challenge for multiple A-finals at the upcoming ACC Championships.

Just like his teammate Millard did in the backstroke events, grad student Denis Petrashov secured both breaststroke victories. His time of 52.34 cleared the field by over a full second in the 100m while his time of 1:55.17 in the 200 was a near three second victory. It was a 1-2 finish for the Cardinals in both events, with Luke Shourds (53.57) touching 2nd in the 100 and Tommy Bried (1:57.75) securing 2nd in the longer distance.

Kentucky sophomore Ryan Merani posted two individual wins on the day, taking the 200 fly and 200 IM. His win in the 200 fly came in a time of 1:42.50, and is a new best time. His time of 1:45.82 in the 200 IM is just shy of his 1:45.38 best time from a few months ago. Notably, he posted a time of 47.27 in the 100 fly for 2nd place, another best time. The winner of that 100 fly was Louisville senior Dalton Lowe, who won by about two seconds in a swift 45.33. The swim narrowly missed his best time of 45.26 from the 2022 ACC Championships.

Lowe bagged another win earlier in the day, taking the 50 free win in 19.37. Once again, he narrowly missed his best time in that event as well. He has been as quick as 19.32, which he recorded at the 2022 NCAA Championships. Despite just missing his best ever performances, it sets him up for a very promising championship season over the next two months.

Other Event Winners:

  • Louisville junior Denis Loktev led a 1-2-3 finish for the Cardinals in the 200 free, stopping the clock in 1:34.67. Murilo Sartori (1:34.96) and Guy Brooks (1:35.07) followed closely behind.
  • Sartori would build upon his runner-up finish in the 200 free with a win in the 100, touching in 43.35.
  • The Cardinals were victorious in the 400 free relay, stopping the clock in 2:52.80. It was a 1-2 finish for Louisville, with the winning team consisting of Matias Santiso (43.54), Dalton Lowe (42.67), Denis Loktev (42.93), and Guy Brooks (43.66).

Women’s Recap

The Louisville women kicked off the day with a decisive 1-2 victory in the 200 medley relay, with the foursome of Karoline Barrett (25.04), Ella Welch (27.15), Christiana Regenauer (22.58), and Gabi Albiero (21.87) posting a time of 1:36.64 to clear the field by almost two seconds. The B-squad touched in 1:38.49, while Kentucky rounded out the top three in 1:38.81.

Kentucky fought back in the next event, clocking a 1-2 finish in the 1000 free. Junior Caroline Benda led the way, touching in 9:45.40 for an 8 second victory. Her teammate, senior Megan Drumm, touched in 9:53.81 for 2nd place. Drumm was in a close race with Louisville grad student Maddie Luther the whole way, and Luther ultimately finished in 9:53.92 for 3rd. Luther split 27.81 on the final 50 to Drumm’s 28.30, but Drumm had a big enough lead at the 950 turn to hold on for 2nd.

Kentucky would add another individual win in the 200 back, with sophomore Grace Frericks getting the better of Louisville junior Rye Ulett at the final touch. Frericks took the race out strong and led from start to finish, touching in 1:53.77 to Ulett’s 1:53.81. Ulett made a charge on the final 50, splitting 28.63 to the 29.17 posted by Frericks. It ultimately wasn’t enough, as Frericks held on by 0.04 for a Wildcat victory.

Louisville freshman Summer Cardwell claimed a pair of individual wins, taking the 200 and 500 freestyle events. She stopped the clock in 1:45.19 to win the 200, taking the race out in a strong 23.90 through the first 50. She split 26.58, 27.23, and 27.48 on the final three 50s, enough for the win by just shy of a second. Teammate Fernanda Gomes Celidonio stayed with her through the first 100, took the lead at the 150 turn, but was overtaken through the closing stages. She ultimately finished 2nd in 1:45.87, while Kentucky sophomore Grace Frericks touched in 1:47.13 for 3rd. Gomes Celidonio would later take the 200 IM win in 1:58.94, leading a Louisville 1-2-3 finish in the process.

Cardwell’s second win in the 500 free was much more decisive, as she hit the wall in 4:46.26 to clear the field by over three seconds. It was another 1-2 finish for the Cardinals, as grad student Maddie Luther touched in 4:50.11 for runner-up status. Kentucky senior Megan Drumm touched in 4:50.30 to secure 3rd place points for the Wildcats.

Gabi Albiero showcased her butterfly skills en route to two wins, touching 1st in both the 100 and 200 distances. She first clocked a 1:54.95 best time to win the 200 fly, an event we rarely see the junior compete in. More known for her sprinting prowess, she hit the halfway mark in 53.55 before closing in 1:01.40.

She later led a 1-2-3 finish for the Cardinals in the 100 fly, winning in 51.25. Grad student Christiana Regenauer stayed with her the entire way, touching in 51.41 for a 2nd-place finish. Sophomore Karoline Barrett hit the touchpad in 53.74 to round out the sweep. The time from Regenauer is particularly impressive for January, as her best time stands at the 51.03 she recorded at the 2023 ACC Championships.

Before her 51.41 100 fly performance, Regenauer secured two individual wins in the 50 and 100 free events. She hit the wall in 21.95 to win the 50 before clocking 48.26 in the 100. She led a 1-2-3 finish for Louisville in both races, and the 50 saw two swimmers crack the 22-second realm. In addition to Regenauer, sophomore Julia Dennis hit a 21.98 marker in the race.

The Cardinals ended the session on a high note, posting a very swift 400 free relay time for a dual meet. They stopped the clock in 3:12.93, with the quartet consisting of Gabi Albiero (48.10), Julia Dennis (47.69), Lucy Mehraban (48.99), and Ella Welch (48.15).

Other Event Winners:

  • Louisville senior Paige Hetrick clocked 52.63 en route to 100 back victory.
  • Cardinal sophomore Ella Welch touched in 59.99 to secure a win in the 100 breast. She owns a best time of 59.89 from the Ohio State midseason invite in November.
  • Kim Emely Herkle, a junior at Louisville, posted a time of 2:11.06 to win the 200 breast.

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Circle swim
4 months ago

UL women are going to hit their taper at NCs and finish in 3rd.

Reply to  Circle swim
4 months ago

Probably. Can totally see Florida crash and burn and women’s teams behind VA/Tex are not very good this year.

Other than Florida, Texas and maybe IU, every womens team in top 10 got worse this year.

Louisville should be a safe bet for a distant 3rd behind UVA/Tex

4 months ago

Louisville men have had a few quiet years but they can def get back into the top 12 this year with some good swims

4 months ago

UL looking very strong