Three to Compete at NCAA Men's Championships
IOWA CITY, Iowa - Three University of Kentucky swimmers and divers will compete at the NCAA Men’s Swimming and Diving Championships in Iowa City, Iowa, March 26-28. The Wildcats will be represented by sophomore swimmers Brandon Flynn and Kyle Higgins and freshman diver Levi Lindsey.
Flynn will make his second NCAA appearance of his career, while Higgins and Lindsey earned their first NCAA bids. Last season, Flynn finished 23rd overall in the 400 individual medley with a then-school-record time of 3:46.98 along with a 25th-place finish in the 1,650 freestyle and a top-40 finish in the 500 free.
Flynn qualified in the 400 individual medley and is seeded 28th overall with a time of 3:44.99. His time, set at the SEC Championships last month, marks the fastest time in program history. He will race in the 400 IM on Friday and also compete in the 500 freestyle on Thursday and the 1,650 freestyle on Saturday.
Higgins will race in the 200 butterfly on Saturday, where he is seeded 25th with a 1:43.36. Higgins earned his qualifying time at the SEC Championships, with the second-fastest time in UK history. He will also compete in the 100 butterfly on Friday.
Lindsey earned his first NCAA bid and will compete on platform on Saturday. Lindsey placed sixth overall with a 703.40 at the NCAA Zone Diving Championships on March 14.
FOLLOWING THE ACTION IN IOWA CITY, IOWA
Fans can follow along with all the action from Iowa’s Campus and Recreation and Wellness Center Natatorium with live swimming results at http://www.hawkeyesports.com/livestats/c-swim/. Diving results can be found on DiveMeets.com. Video from Thursday’s finals and each day of prelims will be streamed on HawkeyeSports.com, while ESPN3 and WatchESPN will have a live stream of Friday and Saturday’s finals action.
Additional updates can be found at @UKSwimDive, the official Twitter account of the UK swimming and diving program.
A LOOK BACK AT THE 2014 NCAA CHAMPIONSHIPS
Kentucky placed 37th at the 2014 NCAA Men’s Swimming and Diving Championships in Austin, Texas. UK earned five All-America honors, with diver Greg Ferrucci earning his seventh career award, while the Wildcat’s medley relay team of Lucas Gerotto, George Greenhalgh, Eric Bruck and Chris Lott all were named All-Americans for the first time in their careers.
Ferrucci placed 11th on platform for his highest finish at the championships. The senior finished third in the consolation finals after he placed 26th on the 1-meter event and 34th on 3-meter
Kentucky’s 200 medley relay team came in 16th overall and 8th in the consolation final with a time of 1:26.25. In the finals, Gerotto opened with a 21.88 backstroke. Greenhalgh, swimming breaststroke, posted a 23.91, while Bruck was UK’s third leg, with a 21.04 butterfly. Lott anchored the relay with a 19.42 freestyle. They opened Friday’s competition with a 1:26.10 in the prelims, which put them 16th overall and into the finals by just 0.01 seconds. Their time was the sixth-fastest in the second of four heats.
Brandon Flynn also made his NCAA Championships debut and competed in three events. Flynn broke the school record in the 400 individual medley with a time of 3:46.98. He finished second in the opening heat and 23rd overall. In the 500 freestyle, the freshman won his heat and placed 40th overall with a personal-best 4:20.95. He also finished 24th overall in the 1650 freestyle and touched the wall in 15:04.95.
UK WOMEN POST HIGHEST NCAA FINISH SINCE 2007
The Kentucky women earned their fourth-best NCAA Championships finish and the third-most points at the NCAA meet in UK history. The Wildcats finished 16th as a team and earned their best finish at the NCAA Championships since 2007.
On the podium, Christina Bechtel won silver in the 200 butterfly, Danielle Galyer finished fourth in the 200 backstroke and Rebecca Hamperian earned a fourth-place finish on 1-meter and a seventh-place finish on platform.
UK earned a total of 17 All-America accolades in nine different events at the three day championships. Bechtel and Galyer led the Wildcats with four apiece, while diver Christa Cabot and Hamperian were joined by senior Abby Myers with two. Seniors Sam Shaheen and Kristin Wilson and freshman Bridgette Alexander were named All-Americans in one event, with Shaheen and Wilson’s honors coming as part of relay events.
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.
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.