A day after their thrilling tie with the defending NCAA Champion Georgia Bulldogs, the #4 Texas A&M women welcomed in the #21 SMU Mustangs for another top 25 battle in College Station. This time, there was no question of a tie as the A&M women exhibitioned all-but-winners for the last half of the meet, plus the winning 200 free relay, for a final 174-110 victory.
Though the scoring was a clear Aggie domination, SMU did have some good results. They have nowhere near the depth of Steve Bultman’s squad, but the top-heavy Mustangs do have a core of All-American caliber swimmers, and the Aggies are clearly one of the top 5 teams in the country this year.
NCAA Champion Breeja Larson took the win in one of her two signature events, the 200 breaststroke, going a 2:11.93 to top fellow National Teamer Sarah Henry (2:18.39).
Larson didn’t swim the 100 breaststroke at this meet, where Ashley McGregor won in 1:02.64, with Franko Jonker taking 2nd in 1:02.77 and Sycerika McMahon placing 3rd in 1:03.52.
Instead, Larson swam the 50 free as her 2nd event, and took 2nd place in 23.29 behind the team’s star sprinter Lili Ibanez (23.23). That’s an Aggie sprint group that continues to look more-and-more confident as this season wears on, especially with Larson swimming very well. She also had the fastest split on the 200 free relay with a 22.96, albeit on the B relay, as the Aggies went 1-2-3 to close the meet there, and it’s looking more-and-more like the lengthy Larson might have more than breaststroke to swim at this year’s NCAA Championship meet.
Those who won for SMU include Isabella Arcila in the women’s 100 back in 56.25, followed by Texas A&M freshman Maddie Edwards in 56.70. Texas A&M gets fairly thin after Paige Miller in the 100 back, and the typically sprint-oriented Miller swam the 200 back and the 200 fly at this meet, which left the talented sophomore Arcila for the win.
Miller did lead off A&M’s 400 medley relay with a 54.67 backstroke split, as the Aggies combined for a 3:40.21. Larson split a 1:00.16 on the breaststroke leg of that relay.
Texas A&M’s other Olympian Cammile Adams took the top spot in the 100 fly by nearly a second in 55.02. Caroline McElhany was 2nd in 55.91, which is a hair slower, but basically the same, as the time she went against Georgia on Friday.
Adams would later win her signature event, the 200 fly, in 1:58.30. Thought she was quite-a-bit faster against Georgia, neither time is as good as she was in mid-January of 2013, which might make the Aggie faithful a tiny trepidation as the 200 fly looks like a much superior field this year to the one that Adams beat last year, nationwide.
Other A&M wins included Sycerika McMahon in the 500 free (4:55.05) as she pulled away from SMU’s Nina Rangelova (4:56.95) in the last 50 yards; Sarah Henry won the girls 200 free in 1:49.34; and Adams took her 1st out of 3 individual wins with a 9:54.12 in the 1000 free.
A&M’s diving crew, which is in rebuilding mode, got great performances from their freshman divers. Courtney Hattie won the 3-meter with a score of 330.45, which is her highest total of the year, and Zoe Alaniz won the 1-meter with a score of 271.65. Out of 6 female divers on the A&M roster, they have 4 freshman, 1 sophomore, and a senior.