The Vanderbilt and Auburn Women’s Swimming teams opened the season with a dual meet at the Centennial Sportsplex. The Tigers defeated Vanderbilt 158-44 to move to 1-0 on the year.
Not only did the Tigers win each event on Friday, they also took the top two spots in 10 out of 12 events. Only the 200 breast and 500 free did Auburn not take second place along with first. In both those events, freshman Annie Lazor and Ashley Neidigh came away with their first wins as Tigers.
For the Commodores, After not finishing higher than third in their first nine events, Carrie Bencic and Elly Faulkner picked up back-to-back second place finishes in the 500-yard freestyle (5:02.92) and the 200-yard breaststroke (2:24.01), respectively.
Caroline Thomas took third in the 50-yard freestyle, touching the wall at 24.87. Christina Wang and Melissa Roberts came in behind Thomas in fifth and eighth, respectively.
Freshmen Rachel Koch and Alexandra Blankenburg took third and fourth in the 200-yard butterfly with times of 2:07.13 and 2:07.82. Lauren Torres and Alyxandra Vernon rounded out the Vanderbilt squad in that event, finishing in fifth and seventh.
For the Tigers, Lazor won the 200 breast, clocking a time of 2:21.46 and winning by over three seconds. She then followed that with a third-place finish in the 400 IM (4:29.96) to complete a 1-2-3 finish for the Tigers. As for Neidigh, she notched her first collegiate win in the 1,000 free to kick off the individual portion of the meet. The freshman clocked a time of 10:02.49, winning by over 20 seconds over teammate Siena DeVenuto (10:23.59). Neidigh wasn’t finished though as she also claimed victory in the 500 free in 5:02.08.
Along with Neidigh, sophomore Jillian Vitarius was the only other multi-event winner as an individual for the Tigers. Vitarius took home the 200 free and 200 back events notching times of 1:50.94 and 1:59.48, respectively. Her 200 free time was just off a personal-best.
As the meet transferred into the sprint portion, Auburn continued its winning ways as senior Emily Bos took the 50 free title (23.12), just one second off a personal-best and a few hundredths of a second from an NCAA ‘B’ cut time. Bos and fellow senior Aubrey Peacock went one-two in the fastest race of the day. Peacock finished in 23.94.
Freshman Kristen Murslack became the freshman winner on the day as she claimed victory in the 400 IM with a time of 4:26.03, winning by over two full seconds. That win was followed up by a 200 fly victory from veteran Megan Fonteno. She ended up winning by almost three full seconds (2:04.88).
The freshman surge continued as Allyx Purcell headed a 1-2-3 finish for the Tigers in the 100 free, winning with a time of 50.52, just off the NCAA ‘B’ qualifying time.
Auburn also swept the two relays in the meet Freshman Sarah Reynolds, Murslack, Fonteno and senior Haley Krakowski made up the winning 400 medley relay time, clocking a 3:47.58.
Senior Hallie Stupp, Bos, Fonteno and junior Aimee Middleton took the win in the 400 free relay (3:29.97) completing the 1-2-3 finish to complete the meet.
Vanderbilt will be back in the pool again on October 12 when they host national powerhouse Texas A&M at the Centennial Sportsplex. For more on Vanderbilt Swimming visit VUCommodores.com
The Auburn women will hit the water again when they travel to South Bend, Ind., to take part in the Notre Dame Tri-Meet against Indiana and Notre Dame. That meet will be held Oct. 11-12. For more on Auburn Swimming visit AuburnTigers.com
You can find complete results here.