UK Swimming and Diving Sweeps Bearcats on Senior Day
Lexington, Ky. - The Kentucky swimming and diving team sent the 2006 senior class out in style on Saturday sweeping Cincinnati at the Lancaster Aquatic Center. The No. 17 men handled the Bearcats 151-96 while the 25th-ranked women defeated UC 155-100.
The UK men (7-3, 3-2 SEC) were dominant claiming victory in 10 events. The Cats were once again led by seniors Daniel Farnham and Steven Manley. The two returning All-Americans both made NCAA A cuts.
Farnham, a native of Mount Berry, Ga., qualified for the NCAA Championships with his time of 0:43.34 while winning the 100 freestyle event. Farnham also helped the Catsí 400 medley relay team, along with Shane Eliason, Mickey Malul and Kristian Outinen, make the NCAA B cut with a time of 3:20.57.
Manley, a Dublin, Ireland, native secured his NCAA A cut in the 200 freestyle swim. Manley qualified for the NCAAs with his first-place time of 1:35.22.
The men also received some tremendous performances from sophomore Outinen and freshman Malul. Outinen, a returning honorable mention All-America selection, placed first in the 100 breaststroke and 100 backstroke events. The freshman Malul, appearing in his first meet of the season, qualified for the NCAA B cut in the 100 breaststroke event as he finished in first with a time of 0:55.47.
The Kentucky women (8-3, 4-2 SEC) also received some special performances from several seniors. Shantel Commander finished first in the 200 breaststroke and was also a member 400 medley relay team that recorded a win.
The Cats also received a winning performance in the 100 breaststroke from returning All-American Laura Graham. The E. Sussex, England, native also was a member of the winning 400 medley relay team.
Jillian Becker scored the best mark of her career on the 3-meter diving event with a score of 335.78. Beckerís score placed her just ahead of her two defending Southeastern Conference champion teammates, junior Taryn Ignacio and fellow senior Jessica Thompson.
Freshman Kelly Rames also joined in on the seniors' winning ways by capturing the 200 butterfly and 500 freestyle events. "We are really happy with the results of today's meet," head coach Gary Conelly said. "I was really happy to see those NCAA A and B cuts. Laura Graham's swims were also really good to see with the postseason about to begin."
Conelly also was very happy to pick up the win for his senior class that believes has really made a lasting impact at UK.
"This is a great class and they will be an enormous loss. This group has produced conference champions, NCAA qualifiers and All-Americans. This group also includes performers, like Brennan Moore, who have made the difference in a lot meets throughout their careers."
"It is great to have a day to honor our seniors but at the same time it also sad because we will miss them."
The Cats will now be off training for the Southeastern Conference Championships which is slated to begin Feb. 15 in Knoxville, Tenn., at the UT Student Aquatics Center.