Kentucky Swimming Notebook

Several Wildcat swimmers find themselves among the fastest competitors in the college swimming ranks and appear poised to make quite a splash in post-season competition.

Leading the way is sophomore Steven Manley, who holds several swimming records in his native Ireland. His time of 1:36.12 in the 200-yard freestyle leads the nation. As a freshman, Manley turned in a sixth-place finish in the 200-yard freestyle at the 2003 SEC Championships and placed 22nd at the 2003 NCAA Championships, marking the highest 2003 NCAA finish for a Wildcat in an individual swimming event.

Junior Daniel Cruz?s UK record-setting time of 1:44.79 in the 200-yard butterfly is tops in the SEC and the third-fastest time in the country. Cruz earned an NCAA ?A? cut with his record-setting swim, qualifying him for competition at the 2004 NCAA Swimming Championships next month in Long Island, N.Y. Cruz?s 47.89 in the 100-yard butterfly also is first in the conference and 12th in the nation.

The UK men also figure to make noise at the 2004 SEC Championships in the 200-yard freestyle relay. The Cats? time of 1:21.26 is good for third in the conference and 14th in the nation.

On the women?s side, junior Jessica Siegele and sophomore Laura Graham are challenging for top SEC times. Siegele?s 55.59 in the 100-yard backstroke is the fourth-fastest time in the SEC, while Graham holds the SEC?s fifth-fastest time in the 200-yard breaststroke with a time of 2:14.66. Below is a listing of notable swim times turned in this season by Wildcat swimmers.

 MEN Event Time NCAA Rank SEC Rank Steven Manley 100 Freestyle 44.68 25th 8th 200 Freestyle 1:36.12 1st 1st 500 Freestyle 4:23.49 16th 6th 200 IM 1:50.99 50th 12th Daniel Cruz 100 Butterfly 47.89 12th 1st 200 Butterfly 1:44.79 3rd 1st Jerram Chudleigh 200 Butterfly 1:48.28 26th 6th Eddie Clement 200 Butterfly 1:49.59 47th 11th 200 Free Relay 1:21.26 14th 3rd 400 Free Relay 3:00.90 21st 5th 800 Free Relay 6:40.41 13th 5th 200 Medley Relay 1:31.47 32nd 7th 400 Medley Relay 3:20.92 26th 6th Daniel Farnham 50 Freestyle 20.49 42nd 9th Tim Patrick 50 Freestyle 20.45 37th 7th WOMEN Event Time NCAA Rank SEC Rank Brennan Moore 1650 Free 16:49.83 49th 11th 400 IM 4:20.23 32nd 9th Jessica Siegele 100 Backstroke :55.59 24th 4th Laura Graham 100 Breaststroke 1:03.63 34th 9th 200 Breaststroke 2:14.66 10th 5th

Graham Sets New UK Breaststroke Record

The aforementioned 2:14.66 recorded by sophomore Laura Graham in the 200-yard breaststroke set a new UK event record. Graham?s record swim last weekend against Cincinnati broke Emily Grass? six-year-old school record by over four tenths of a second. The time likely will earn Graham a berth in the NCAA Swimming Championships next month at Texas A&M.