UK to Compete at NCAA Swimming and Diving Championships
Feb. 16, 2015
GREENSBORO, N.C. - Seven University of Kentucky swimmers and divers and two relay teams will compete at the NCAA Swimming and Diving Championships in Greensboro, N.C., March 19-21.
UK's NCAA competitors, twice as many as last season, include senior All-Americans Christina Bechtel, Christa Cabot and Abby Myers, sophomores Kendal Casey, Danielle Galyer and Rebecca Hamperian and freshman Bridgette Alexander. UK also earned bids in the 800 freestyle relay and 400 medley relay, where the lineups could also include seniors Samantha Shaheen and Kristen Wilson.
NCAA Women's Championships
Thursday, March 19-Saturday, March 21, 2015
Prelims: 11 a.m. ET, Finals: 7 p.m. ET
Greensboro Aquatic Center, Greensboro, N.C.
Video: NCAA Preview
UK Info: Meet Notes (PDF)
Meet Info: Championship Central
Video: Prelims, Thursday Finals | Friday Finals | Saturday Finals
Live Swimming Results: swmmeets.com
Live Diving Results: DiveMeets.com
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Bechtel, Cabot, Myers and Galyer made up UK's NCAA team in 2014. Bechtel and Cabot will be making her third NCAA Championships appearance and Myers and Galyer each will compete in their second NCAA event. Casey and Alexander both qualified for the first time in their careers, along with Shaheen and Wilson.
At last season's NCAA Championships, Cabot earned All-America honors on 3-meter and platform, while Bechtel and Myers each were named All-Americans in the 200 butterfly.
Bechtel and Myers both qualified in the 100 and 200 butterfly. Bechtel with times of 51.04 and 1:52.36, and Myers in 52.65 and 1:56.48. The school record-holder in both events, Bechtel won the Southeastern Conference championship and owns the nation's fastest time this season in the 200 butterfly. Bechtel is seeded first in the 200 butterfly and third in the 100, while Myers is seeded 27th in the 200 and 34th in the 100.
Alexander and Galyer also qualified in two events, the 100 and 200 backstroke. Galyer is the SEC champion and seeded fifth in the 200 backstroke with a time of 1:50.95, while she owns a 52.17 in the 100, seeded 17th. Alexander enters the NCAA Championships with a 52.95 in the 100 and a 1:53.41 in the 200 backstroke, seeded 34th and 19th, respectively. Galyer owns the program record time in both events, while Alexander is second all-time in the UK record books.
Alexander will also race in the 200 individual medley, where she is seeded 65th with a time of 1:59.17, which marks the second-fastest time in school history.
Casey earned her first NCAA Championships bid in the 1,650 freestyle with a time of 16:15.91. The second-fastest time in school history, Casey placed 15th overall at the SEC Championships and is seeded 35th at nationals. Casey will also swim in the 500 freestyle, where she is seeded 47th with a time of 4:43.61, the second-fastest time in UK history.
For the divers, Cabot and Hamperian will both compete on every event after the duo qualified on 1- and 3-meter and on platform at the NCAA Zone Diving Championships. In Zone C, Cabot and Hamperian were one of three women's divers to qualify for the NCAA Championships on all three events. A total of 13 women's divers earned an NCAA bid on at least one event.
FOLLOWING THE ACTION IN GREENSBORO, N.C.
Fans can follow along with all the action from the Greensboro Aquatic Center with live swimming results at swmeets.com/Realtime/NCAA/2015/. Diving results can be found on DiveMeets.com. Video from Thursday's finals and each day of prelims will be streamed on GoPack.com, while ESPN3 and WatchESPN will have a live stream of Friday and Saturday's finals action.
Additional updates and behind-the-scenes notes and photos can be found at @UKSwimDive, the official Twitter account of the UK swimming and diving program.
UK'S NCAA CHAMPIONSHIP HISTORY
Taryn Ignacio won UK's first NCAA title in 2006 on platform. A five-time All-America honoree from 2005-07, Ignacio reached the podium four times in her career.
UK's best team finish came in 2007, when the Wildcats finished 12th. Kentucky placed 13th the previous year. Last year's 23rd-place finish was UK's best since 2008 and the first time the Wildcats scored points at the championships since 2011.
A LOOK BACK AT THE 2014 NCAA CHAMPIONSHIPS
Last season, Kentucky placed 23rd at the NCAA Championships in Minneapolis, Minn. UK's 23rd-place finish was the school's best since 2008 and the first time since 2011 that the Wildcats scored points and earned a spot in the final standings.
The Wildcats had four athletes at the three-day event, three who earned All-America honors. Diver Christa Cabot was named All-American on 3-meter and on platform and Christina Bechtel and Abby Myers both were named All-Americans in the 200 butterfly. The three were the first women All-Americans at UK since 2011.
Bechtel notched UK's highest finish of the championship in the 200 butterfly when she finished fifth with a school-record time of 1:53.65. Myers finished 12th overall in the same event with a 1:56.43 after a prelim time of 1:56.23, the second-fastest time in UK history.
Cabot advanced to the finals at the NCAA Championships for the first time in her career and finished eighth overall in the 3-meter on Friday with a 293.00 before an 11th-place finish on platform on Saturday. She placed 19th in the 1-meter on Thursday, just shy of a finals berth.
Danielle Galyer also swam for UK and finished 36th in the 200 backstroke and 44th in the 100 backstroke. Bechtel added a 19th-place finish and Myers finished 35th in the 100 butterfly on the event's second day. Bechtel opened the championship with a 43rd-place finish in the 50 yard freestyle on the first day.
LAST TIME OUT: TWO WILDCATS WIN SEC TITLES
Kentucky won two titles and broke 10 school records at the SEC Swimming and Diving Championships, Feb. 17-21 in Auburn, Ala. Senior Christina Bechtel won the 200 butterfly, while sophomore Danielle Galyer posted UK's second win in the 200 backstroke. Bechtel and sophomore diver Rebecca Hamperian also won silver medals for the Wildcats in the 100 butterfly and on 1-meter, respectively at the five-day conference championships.
The Kentucky women finished seventh in the final team standings with 614 points, the Wildcats' best finish at the conference championships since 2011, when they also placed seventh. The women beat five teams at the annual event for the first time since 2008. Georgia claimed first for the sixth consecutive season. The UK men placed 10th overall with 407 points. Florida claimed their third conference title in a row.
Bechtel and Galyer's conference championships were UK's first SEC title since 2007 and the first under second-year head coach Lars Jorgensen. Bechtel became the first Wildcat to win a swimming title since 2006 and the first female swimmer from Kentucky to win gold at the conference meet since 1999.
UP NEXT: MEN RACE AT NCAA CHAMPIONSHIPS
UK will be represented by three athletes at the NCAA Men's Swimming and Diving Championships, March 26-28 in Iowa City, Iowa. Sophomore swimmers Brandon Flynn and Kyle Higgins will be joined by freshman diver Levi Lindsey. Flynn, making his second NCAA appearance, will swim in the 400 medley relay. Higgins will race in the 200 butterfly and Lindsey will compete on platform.
|Click image for UK's Meet Notes (PDF)|
For complete news and updates on the Kentucky Swimming and Diving program, go to UKathletics.com/SwimmingDiving. Breaking news, behind-the-scenes updates, photos and more can be found on Twitter at @UKSwimDive and Facebook at Facebook.com/UKSwimDive.