Koski Triples as Undefeated Georgia Sweeps Emory

WOMEN’S MEET

Led by two individual victories each from Emily Cameron, Hali Flickinger, and Olivia Ball, the Georgia women’s team improved their season record to 4-0 by defeating Emory 180 to 115. With this victory, the Lady Bulldogs now have 97 straight dual meet and tri meet wins at home. Their impressive streak kicked off more than 20 years ago, beginning November 8, 1995.

Despite the loss, Emory also swam well. They managed to put up multiple top ten times across the Division III leaderboards, demonstrating why the women are ranked first in their division.

The Bulldogs kicked things off with a narrow win over Emory in the 200 medley relay. The team of Olivia Smoliga, Anna McKenzie, Anna Kolanowski, and Stephanie Peters finished in 1:44.42, only six hundredths over Emory’s 1:44.48. Georgia’s team was led by a strong 24.95 backstroke split from Smoliga while Emory made up ground in the breaststroke with an impressive 28.95 split from Annelise Kowalsky. Georgia’s B relay featured a few impressive splits as well with Courtney Weaver and Meaghan Raab clocking in the fastest fly and free splits in the event. Weaver split 25.15 on the fly leg and Raab brought it home in 22.73.

Cameron scored a win for the Lady Bulldogs early in the meet, taking the 1000 free in a time of 9:55.60. This was a unique event for Cameron to swim as she is typically a breaststroke/IM specialist, but she nevertheless still put up a time that ranks her 15th in the country so far. This speaks to the closing speed she has in her 400 IM, where she was 11th at NCAAs last year. She was followed by teammates Megan Kingsley (10:07.07) and Rachel Zilinskas (10:11.31). Fourth was Emory’s Shelby Fruge who dropped 13 seconds from her season best to move up to fourth in the Division III national rankings. Her time of 10:27.26 is also nearly a full second faster than her best dual meet swim from last year.

Cameron also won the 100 fly, another off-event for her, finishing in a time of 55.95. She was followed by teammate Anna Kolanowski who touched just behind in 56.61. Emory’s top scorer was Fiona Muir who swam a 57.77 to take fourth. Muir’s time was barely slower than her season best, which ranks her second nationally, and she now holds two of the four fastest D3 swims in the 100 fly this season.

Hali Flickinger had a stellar day, winning two of her three individual events and achieving two lifetime best times. In the 100 back, the race came down to the wire between Flickinger and her teammate Olivia Smoliga. Smoliga led Flickinger by two tenths at the 50, and while Flickinger made a strong push at the end, she couldn’t quite close the gap. The pair finished in 53.39 and 53.41. Smoliga’s season best and Flickinger’s lifetime best place the two 10th and 11th nationwide this year. Smoliga, the returning 5th place finisher at last year’s NCAA’s, shattered her fastest dual meet time from last season by nearly a second and a half and dropped nearly two seconds off her fastest swim so far this year. Emory’s top finisher was Ellie Thompson who touched fourth in a time of 57.84.

Flickinger went on to win the 100 free in another lifetime best of 49.90. Notably, her former best time was set just over a week ago when she clocked a 50.12 against Georgia Tech. Anna Kolanowski of Georgia touched second in 52.00 while Emory’s sprint star Marissa Bergh finished third in 52.59. Bergh’s time was just slightly off of her season best of 52.35, which ranks third in Division III this year.

Flickinger’s other win came in the 200 IM, where she put up a lifetime dual meet best of 1:58.44 to win by over four and a half seconds. Her time bumps her up to third in the country this year, trailing only Michigan’s Siobhan Haughey and Madisyn Cox of Texas. She was followed by Megan Kingsley of the Lady Bulldogs and Emory’s Amelia Hartje, who touched in 2:03.05 and 2:09.48. Hartje’s season best moves her up three places in the Division III national rankings, and she now sits fourth. Notably, she out-touched her teammate Annelise Kowalsky, whose season best still ranks second nationally.

Kingsley scored a victory of her own in the 200 back, winning over teammate Annie Zhu in 2:01.42. Zhu touched second in 2:05.04, followed by Cindy Cheng of Emory, who finished in 2:05.92. Despite finishing 10th at Division III nationals last year, Cheng’s time moves her up to third in the nationwide rankings.

Emory nabbed themselves a one-two punch in the 200 breast, with Lizzie Aronoff and Annelise Kowalsky stealing the show. The pair touched in 2:22.74 and 2:23.71, ahead of Kylie Stewart’s 2:24.37. Anoroff just snuck under Kowalsky’s season best of 2:23.01 to clock the second fastest Division III swim this year, bumping Kowalsky to third. Known primarily as a butterflier, Georgia’s Stewart landed herself a new best time, dropping nearly three seconds off her previous best of 2:27.32 from December 2013.

Prior to her loss in the 200, Annelise Kowalsky scored an early victory in the 100 breast, winning in 1:04.88 in a narrow race over Georgia’s Anna McKenzie (1:04.98). Emory also finished third in this event with a strong 1:05.45 from Ashely Daniels. Kowalsky was a mere .13 seconds off of her season best, which ranks her second in Division III. Daniels’ swim moved her up from sixth to third nationally, sitting just behind Kowalsky. Emory has shown early dominance in the breaststroke events, claiming two of the three top swimmers in the country in both distances.

Annie Zhu claimed another off-event win for Georgia in the 200 free, touching first in 1:51.35. Julia Wawer and Cindy Cheng of Emory placed second and third in 1:52.26 and 1:53.84. Wawer’s swim moves her to second nationwide, trailing only Denison’s Carolyn Kane. Wawer finished third at last year’s NCAAs but was never under 1:54 in a dual meet during the 2014-15 season.

In the 50, Georgia’s Samantha Fazio separated herself from the pack, winning in a time of 23.82. This marks the freshman’s first collegiate win. She was followed by Emory’s Marissa Bergh (24.13) and Georgia’s Shauna Lee (24.15). Bergh’s time moves her up to fifth in the Division III rankings and she now sits top five in both the 50 and 100 free.

Stephanie Peters and Meaghan Raab showed dominance in the 500, placing first and second in 4:48.57 and 4:52.43. Peters’ time was enough to bump her up to 7th nationwide, barely edging ahead of teammate Brittany MacLean’s swim against UNC. Emory’s Julia Wawer continued her success after the 200 free, dropping four seconds off her season best to put up a 5:05.86. Wawer’s swim moves her up to 5th in the Division III rankings.

Georgia closed the meet with a win over Emory in the 200 free relay, touching in 1:34.78 to Emory’s 1:35.87. Although the swim was technically an exhibition race, Smoliga’s 22.81 lead-off cemented a strong victory for the Lady Bulldogs. Olivia Ball of Georgia won both diving events, scoring 337.13 in the one meter and 322.95 in the three meter. In both events, she was followed by teammate Allison Greene and Emory’s Mara Rosenstock.

MEN’S MEET

The Georgia men also put up an impressive performance, with Matias Koski stealing the show with his three individual wins. Just like the women, the men’s victory puts them at a 4-0 dual meet record this season.

The Bulldogs kicked the meet off with a win in the 200 medley relay, though it was not without drama. Not only did three of Emory’s four freestylers leave early and disqualify their relays, but Emory’s A relay would have won the event. Instead, the win went to the B team of Aidan Burns, James Guest, Jay Litherland, and Alex Bemiller, who touched in a time of 1:32.70. Georgia’s C relay was only .02 behind in 1:32.72. Ty Stewart split a quick 22.95 lead-off on the C relay which was countered by Guest’s 25.51 breaststroke split from the B team.

Koski’s first victory of the night came in the 1000 free, where he touched over teammate Gunnar Bentz, 9:15.21 to 9:22.82. Emory’s top finisher was Tom Gordon, who placed fifth in 9:41.23. Koski swam six seconds slower than his 9:09 race against Georgia Tech last week but was still quick enough to cinch the win. Gordon’s swim moves him ahead of Kenyon’s Arthur Conover in the Division III national rankings, and he now sits fourth.

Koski won yet again in the 100, winning by over a full second to defeat teammate Pace Clark. The pair were 44.60 and 45.78. Alex Hardwick was the top finisher for Emory, placing fourth in 46.37. Hardwick’s season best moves him up to third in the country, sitting only a hundredth of a second behind NYU’s Chad Moody.

The 100 butterfly saw Koski’s third victory in his closest race of the night, touching out teammate Mick Litherland 48.86 to 49.19. Litherland missed his season best of 48.66 by about a half second. Gordon was again Emory’s top swimmer, touching fifth in 53.25.

Freshman Aidan Burns won the 500 free in a close race over triplet studs Kevin Litherland and Jay Litherland. Burns took the event in 4:27.14 over Kevin’s 4:27.67 and Jay’s 4:28.79. Emory’s top swimmer was Henry Copses, who finished nearly seventeen seconds back in 4:45.44. Burns’s swim marks his second individual collegiate win in his short time at Georgia. Burns also nearly won the 100 back, but was out-touched by teammate Blake Atmore. The pair finished in 50.18 and 50.27, just ahead of Emory’s Mitchell Cooper, who touched in 50.55. Cooper’s former season best of 50.73 already ranked him first in Division III, but he now extends his lead to over a half second over Stevens Institute’s Ravi Sun.

The 200 fly turned out to be the Litherland show, with brothers Jay and Kevin touching first and second in 1:48.45 and 1:51.40. John Galvin was Emory’s strongest showing with a fifth place time of 1:56.68. Galvin was over a second off of his season best time, which currently places him top 20 in the Division III rankings.

Mick Litherland won the 200 free for Georgia in an exhilarating race with teammate Garrett Powell, touching in 1:40.28 to Powell’s 1:40.34. Litherland was trailing by nearly a half second at the 150 but finished with a strong split of 24.69 to overtake Powell in the race’s last stretches. Alex Kohlman of Emory finished fifth in 1:44.48, putting up the strongest showing of any Emory swimmer. Kohlman’s time cuts a full second off of his previous season best and moves him into the top 30 nationally.

Powell returned to earn a victory of his own in the 200 back over teammate Gunnar Bentz. Powell touched in 1:48.12, while Bentz was further back in 1:49.85. Powell’s time was just off his season best of 1:47.61 but marks the fourth time he’s been under 1:49 this season. Mitchell Cooper of Emory placed third in 1:50.90. Just as in the 100 back, Cooper’s new season best extends his Division III lead, and he is now the top-ranked swimmer by nearly two full seconds.

In the 100 breaststroke, Georgia’s Ty Stewart and Taylor Dale put on a great race, touching a mere two tenths apart in 57.45 and 57.65. Emory’s top swimmer was Michael Grenon, who placed fifth in a season best time of 59.60. Georgia’s James Guest swam a dominant race in the 200 breast, clocking in at 2:01.85 and finishing over five seconds ahead of teammate Basil Orr. Emory’s Chandler Lichtefeld was third in 2:08.27, which bumps the sophomore up to sixth in the national rankings after placing 14th at NCAAs last year.

Guest also sealed a second victory in the 200 IM, where he won easily in a time of 1:51.98. Second place went to Emory’s Mitchell Cooper in 1:53.40. Cooper’s swim wrapped up an incredible meet for the junior, where all three of his swims tonight were season bests and new nation-leading times.

Georgia’s Michael Trice won the 50 free handily, nearly cracking the 20 second barrier to finish in 20.02 over Emory’s Ollie Smith (20.51). Trice was only a hundredth off of his season best of 20.01, which ranks him 13th in the country. Trice just failed to qualify for the consolation final in this event at NCAAs last year, where he placed 19th in 19.41. Smith’s time bumps him up from third to first in the Division III rankings where he now leads comfortably by three tenths of a second.

Georgia finished their meet with a one-two-three victory over Emory in the 200 free relay, with the B team of Bemiller, Trice, Powell Brooks, and Mick Litherland taking the win. Trice’s split of 19.67 led the B team to victory over the A team by only seven hundredths of a second. Without a single diver from Emory to challenge, Crawford Berry swept the diving events. He won the one-meter in 320.78 and the three-meter with a score of 384.30.

The Bulldogs will be back in the pool hosting the UGA Fall Invitational from December 4-6. Emory’s next competitions are the Miami Invitational in Oxford, Ohio and the SCAD Invitational in Savannah, Georgia. Both will be taking place December 3-5.

Full meet results can be found here.

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