Jan. 7, 2011
LEXINGTON, Ky. – Fighting illness and travel fatigue, the University of Kentucky swimming and diving teams performed very well in Columbia, S.C., in their second tri-meet in three days. The women’s side earned victories over host-school and Southeastern Conference foe South Carolina and the College of Charleston. The men’s side fell to South Carolina but defeated the College of Charleston.
Going down to the final relay, the Kentucky women’s 400 freestyle relay team of Kayla Sergesketter, Mandy Myers, Chelsea Peterson and Jenna Newsome came out victorious and the Wildcats earned a narrow 144-137 win over the Gamecocks. The Kentucky women defeated the College of Charleston by a score of 224-63.
“I was very pleased with our performances,” UK head coach Gary Conelly said. “The women had an exciting win coming down to the last relay. Considering how tired we were from training and traveling, the ladies swam exceptionally well. They were led today by Kayla Sergesketter, Mandy Myers, Chatham Penrod and Claire Archibald. Also, Lisa Faulkner's win in three-meter diving was critical to our win as a team. I'm very pleased with our effort under difficult circumstances.”
The men’s team fell to South Carolina 189.50-110.50, but defeated the College of Charleston 243-52.
“The men were at a great disadvantage due to illness but they fought valiantly with many in-season bests,” Conelly said. “We got great performances out of our divers, Greg Ferrucci and Zack Peterson. There were many standouts on the swimming side. Leading the way for us were Matt Russell, Colin Faris, Tripp Crosthwaite and Travis Green.”
Faulkner, a senior from Midlothian, Va., recorded a season- and career-best mark in the three-meter board with a score of 320.65. Faulkner also came in third place on the one-meter board.
"Lisa had an excellent day against two of the top divers in the SEC," UK diving head coach Ted Hautau said. "It was a tight contest on the one-meter and she came up short on her last dive. She started off a little slow on the three-meter, but put together three great dives at the end to charge into the lead. It was a clutch finish that the team needed to put them in place to win the meet."
The women’s side opened the swimming portion of the meet by earning a victory in the 400 medley relay. Kentucky’s team of Penrod, Lindsey Graessle, Myers and Sergesketter tapped in with a time of 3:49.03.
The Cats swept the 200 freestyle when Sergesketter clocked in with a time of 1:51.66 to finish in first, followed by Chelsea Peterson and Kristen Wilson who came in second and third place, respectively. Sergesketter won her second individual race of the meet when she finished the 100 free in a time of 51.10.
The Kentucky women also swept the 100 butterfly. Myers won the race with a time of 55.70. She was followed by Kelcy Perry and Anna Mattox who finished third.
In the 100 backstroke, Penrod finished in a time of 57.25 to take first place, and Archibald finished a half-second later to come in second place for the UK women. Penrod won her second individual race of the meet in the 200 back. The senior from Arcanum, Ohio finished with a time of 2:02.38, narrowly defeating Archibald who finished in second place with a time of 2:02.39.
The Cats earned second and third place marks in the 50 freestyle with Myers racing to a time of 23.67 to finish in second, and Newsome coming in at 23.96 to finish in third.
With their scores neck and neck, the Cats produced in the meet’s final race, the 400 free relay. The Cats took home first place honors and in the process earned their second sweep in a tri-meet in just three days. The Kentucky women defeated the Savannah College of Art and Design and Limestone College on Wednesday.
The men’s side began with Ferrucci, a freshman from Huntersville, N.C., continuing his impressive rookie campaign on the diving boards. Ferrucci came in second place on the one-meter board, and recorded a career-best score of 385.90 to take first place on the three-meter board. Also helping out the Cats on the diving boards was Peterson. A freshman from Colorado Springs, Co., Peterson recorded career-best marks Friday on the one- and three-meter board, with scores of 290.10 and 305.30, respectively. Peterson came in third place in each event.
"We got another great performance from Greg today," Hautau said. "He missed one dive on the one-meter and narrowly missed winning. On the three-meter he hung tough to win in a great event. This freshman is showing he can compete against great competition. Zack was brilliant today. He exceeded his best scores on both events by huge margins and narrowly missed the NCAA zone qualifying score in both events. He not only showed that he has improved a whole lot, but that he can come through under pressure."
The UK men’s 400 medley relay team of Ramon Walton, Russell, Jonathan Keltner and Faris earned a season-best time of 3:22.10 to finish in second place.
With a time of 56.64, Russell won the men’s 100 breast. Russell also came in second place in the 200 breast with a season-best time of 2:07.54.
Crosthwaite took home first-place marks in the 200 fly with a time of 1:54.22.
Faris won both of the sprint freestyle races for the men’s team, hitting the final wall with a time of 20.91 in the 50 free, and 45.98 in the 100 free. Chip Aplin finished in second place in the 50 free, crossing at a time of 20.98.
Staying on the men’s side, Green recorded a season-best time in the 500 free and finished in a tie for second place with South Carolina’s Brooks Ross. Green and Ross clocked in at 4:33.41.
The Cats will continue to travel north to Chapel Hill, N.C., as they will face off against North Carolina and Clemson of the Atlantic Coast Conference in the final meet of their road trip on Saturday.
Stay tuned to UKathletics.com for results on Saturday’s meet and for all UK swimming and diving news.