Kentucky V. Tennessee (Women)
- January 14, 2021
- Allan Jones Aquatic Center, Knoxville, TN
- Short Course Yards (SCY)
- Meet Results
- Team Scores: Tennessee 178.5 – Kentucky 121.5
On Thursday, the Kentucky Wildcats visited the Tennessee Volunteers for their first competitions of 2021. The Kentucky women entered this 2021 dual meet undefeated, including their October dual meet win over Tennessee. You can read about the historic dual meet here.
However, it was the defending SEC champions Tennessee that came out on top here in Knoxville with a score of 178.5-121.5. During the meet, four Tennessee/Kentucky dual meet records went down.
In the 200 medley relay, Kentucky led off with sophomore Caitlin Brooks‘ 24.64 backstroke lead-off, followed by senior Bailey Bonnett (28.25) holding off Tennessee freshman Mona McSharry (27.85) in the breaststroke. Wildcat Izzy Gati (24.17) was in the water next for the butterfly, giving teammate Riley Gaines over a half-second lead to anchor the squad in a 22.35. Kentucky won the event with a 1:39.41, defeating Tennessee’s A-relay (1:40.15). Kentucky’s time this afternoon took down the meet record of 1:39.55, which was set at their October 2017 dual meet.
Tennessee sophomore Kristen Stege swept both distance events, winning the 100 free (9:46.99) and 500 free (4:48.27). In the 500 free, Stege broke the 2010 meet record of 4:48.88. Senior teammate Amanda Nunan took second behind Stege in the same event at 4:48.66, also dipping under the former meet record. Nunan settled for a slim second-place finish in the 1000 free as well, touching in at 9:47.13.
Irish national record holder McSharry broke the 100 breast meet record with a winning time of 59.91, dipping under Olympian and Tennessee alumnus Molly Hannis‘ 2014 record of 1:00.57. McSharry also took the win in the 200 breast at 2:12.27, holding off senior teammate Alexis Yager (2:12.43) and Kentucky’s Bonnett (2:12.68). Later on in the 400 IM, Yager went on to crush the 2014 meet record of 4:19.54 with a 4:13.61. Kentucky sophomore Lauren Poole also swam under the former meet record with a 4:17.37.
Kentucky junior Gaines was another double-winner in Knoxville with her top times in the 200 free (1:46.81) and 100 free (49.74). Gaines re-swam the 100 free leading off Kentucky’s second-place 400 free relay, posting a faster swim of 49.33.
Another Kentucky junior, Izzy Gati, held on to the narrow lead in the 200 fly over Tennessee junior Mallory Beil until Kentucky freshman Anna Rice turned on the jets into the last 50. Rice split a blazing 30.77 to overcome her 1.73-second deficit heading into the final 50. She still wound up in a narrow third-place finish at 2:00.66. Gati took the win at 2:00.45, just holding off Beil’s 2:00.52 second-place effort.
More Event Winners:
- 100 Back: Caitlin Brooks, Kentucky, 53.27
- 50 Free: Bailey Grinter, Tennessee, 22.76
- 200 Back: Sophie Sorenson, Kentucky, 1:56.91
- 100 Fly: Trude Rothrock, Tennessee, 53.38
- 400 Free Relay: Grinter, McSharry, Samansky, Pintar, Tennessee, 3:21.09
Tomorrow, the Kentucky and Tennessee men will have their turn in the pool, competition begins at 3 p.m. ET.