The Kentucky swimming and diving team wrapped up day one of its two-day tri meet against Atlantic Coast Conference foes Virginia Tech and Georgia Tech on Friday evening inside the Christiansburg Aquatic Center. As it stands, both the men’s and women’s squads own convincing leads over the Hokies and Yellow Jackets.
At the conclusion of Friday’s events, the men’s team leads Virginia Tech 75-56 and holds a whopping 93-32 advantage over Yellow Jackets. Kentucky’s 18th-ranked women’s team has also tallied a 72-59 lead over the Hokies and holds an impressive 99-32 command over Georgia Tech.
“Overall, we’re pretty happy with how our athletes performed today, but today was only one-third of the battle,” said head coach Lars Jorgensen. “Virginia Tech and Georgia Tech both had some really good swims as well, so we’re definitely going to need to come out strong tomorrow and be ready for a full day of competition.”
In all, the Wildcats combined to rack up six first-place finishes, four B-standard times and swept two events on the day.
On the women’s side, senior diver Becca Hamperian earned the first top finish of the day, posting a 308.00 on the 3-meter springboard. Freshman Kailey Francetic also tallied a 291.00 in the event for a third-place finish in the event.
Kentucky’s group of women’s backstrokers continued its trend, sweeping the 200-yard backstroke event in remarkable fashion. Senior and defending NCAA champion in the event, Danielle Galyer led the way, posting a 1:56.74 to touch the wall first. Her sister, freshman Ali Galyer followed close behind with a 1:57.14 and junior Bridgette Alexander grabbed a third-place finish in 1:57.79. All three were NCAA B-cut times.
Freshman Asia Seidt helped UK to a second place finish in the 100-yard freestyle, posting a 51.12 in the event.
Senior breaststroker Kendra Crew seized the third first-place finish for the women after touching in 2:16.90 in the 200-yard breaststroke. Freshman Madison Winstead was right behind Crew with a time of 2:17.66 for second in the race.
The men’s team opened the day with a second-place score of 340.50 from sophomore diver Seb Masterton on the 1-meter springboard. Junior Stephen Jou snagged fourth in the event with a 328.90 total.
In the 1,650 free, junior Isaac Jones topped the competition with a time of 15:40.52 for the men’s first overall victory of the day. The Wildcats also took second and third in the event as senior Drew Aviotti finished in 15:48.34 and senior Jamie Stevenson in 15:48.76.
Kyle Higgins once again picked up a victory in his specialty race, swimming the 200 fly in a B-cut time of 1:46.05.
The men’s final victory of the day came in the 400 free relay, as Peter Wetzlar, Sean Gunn, Shane Anderson and Glen Brown teamed up to post a 2:59.50. UK also claimed the second-best time in the event as Jason Head, Higgins, Walker Thaning and Jones came together for a 3:01.48 finish.
Last season, when the Hokies made the trip to Lexington, the Kentucky men fell 209-180. Similarly, the women dropped their dual to Virginia Tech, falling 203.5-185.5.
The Wildcats will return to the pool for day two on Saturday morning. The day’s first session will start at 9 a.m. and will include the 200 medley relay, 400 individual medley, 100 fly, 200 free, 100 breast, 100 back, 800 free relay and women’s 1-meter and men’s 3-meter springboard events. The final session is slated to begin at 2 p.m. with the 200 free relay, 500 free, 200 IM, 50 free, 400 medley relay and 10-meter platform diving.
For the latest on the Kentucky swimming and diving program, follow @UKSwimDive on Twitter, on Facebook at Facebook.com/UKSwimDive, and on the web at UKathletics.com.
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