Jan. 26, 2013
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AUBURN - The Auburn women's swimming and diving team finished off an undefeated season Saturday with a win over SEC rival Florida, and the Tiger men fell short to the Gators in their quest for an unbeaten campaign at the James E. Martin Aquatic Center.
Auburn earned a 161-138 win in the women's meet while falling 167-133 in the men's competition. The Tiger women finished the 2012-13 regular season with a 7-0 record (5-0 SEC) while the men posted a 5-1 mark (4-1 SEC).
"It was great for the women to go through undefeated," Auburn head coach Brett Hawke said. "It's great the way they fought as a team. They had some really good swims, and I'm just proud of them to come out victorious. On the men's side, we knew this was going to be a tough battle. We've lost this dual meet the last few years. The men are obviously very tired, but we're losing some close races, which is disappointing. Overall, I was pleased with most of the swims, but there are a few areas where we need to go back and figure it out."
Saturday marked the final home meet for 12 Auburn seniors. Seven women - Katie Gardocki, Laura Johnson, Becca Jones, Micah Lawrence, Lauren Norberg, Lindsey Norberg and Hannah Riordan - and five men - Stuart Ferguson, Chandler Gerlach, Chris Kramer, Kyle Owens and Brandon Siemasko - swam at home for the last time.
"It's always tough (to see a senior class leave)," Hawke said. "This is the group I came in with as head coach, so I'm very close to this group. I'm proud of the way a lot of them fought today."
The Tiger divers were a huge factor in today's meet on both sides. Sophomore Cinzia Calabretta earned a sweep of the women's 1- and 3-meter events, scoring a 315.30 to win on 3-meter and a 285.68 to win the 1-meter event. Freshman Carly Scheper scored a career-best 283.43 to finish runner-up in the 1-meter event, and freshman Morgan Mullins scored 284.63 on the 3-meter board to earn an NCAA Zone qualifying score.
In men's diving, sophomore Fraser McKean swept both boards as well, scoring a 348.68 in 1-meter and a 392.70 on the 3-meter board. Junior John Santeiu was second in both events.
"On the women's side, Cinzia was solid and improving her level of consistency, and that's where we want to be right now," Auburn diving coach Jeff Shaffer said. "I was really pleased with Morgan coming back from a knee injury and getting her Zone qualifying score, so that means we now have everybody advancing. And Carly had a personal-best on 1-meter. Fraser, with a personal-best on 3-meter, did an outstanding job, and everybody else keeps working hard to contribute to the team's success."
In the pool, the Auburn seniors paced the women's team to victory, accounting for four individual wins and at least half of the Tigers' two victorious relays. Riordan made the most of her final home meet, winning all four events in which she competed. The team of Emily Bos, Lauren Norberg, Olivia Scott and Riordan sprinted to a 1:38.45 to open the meet with a win in the 200 medley relay. Then, the team of Riordan, Lindsey Norberg, Megan Fonteno and Bos closed out the meet with a 3:20.14 to win the 400 free relay.
Between the relays, Riordan was unstoppable in the sprints. She blazed to a season-best 22.74 to claim the 50 freestyle, then came back after the break to win the 100 free in 49.35 with Bos just behind her in second place.
Three more seniors came up big in the breaststroke events. Twin sisters Lauren Norberg and Lindsey Norberg posted a 1-2 finish in the 100 breast, with Lauren clocking a 1:00.75 and Lindsey posting a career-best 1:00.89. Lawrence completed an Auburn sweep of the 100 breast with a 1:01.25. Lawrence would then come back to earn a win in the 200 breast with a 2:11.49, and Lauren Norberg took the runner-up spot with a personal-best 2:12.72.
Juniors Emily Bos and Olivia Scott were the other individual winners for Auburn's women on the day. Bos posted a 53.78 to win the 100 back, and Scott went 53.23 to win the 100 fly. Scott also posted a 2:01.22 to take runner-up honors in the 200 IM, all but clinching the victory for the Tigers.
On the men's side, the seniors again provided bright spots in the relays, backstroke and breaststroke. The team of Owens, Ferguson, Marcelo Chierighini and James Disney-May opened things up with a 1:27.00 to win the 200 medley relay.
Owens, one of five men's seniors competing at home for the final time, picked up a pair of individual wins as well. He went 47.78 to comfortably win the 100 back, then breezed to a win in the 200 back with a 1:44.84. Ferguson earned a victory in the 100 breast with a time of 54.46. He would then finish a narrow second in the 200 breast with a 1:58.70.
Chierighini, a junior, picked up the other two wins for the Auburn men. He tied for first place with Florida's Bradley DeBorde in the 50 free, both touching in 19.84 seconds, and then led a 1-2 Auburn finish in the 100 free with a 43.36 as sophomore Alex Hancock took second in 44.35.
Auburn's and Florida's men each won eight events on the day, while the Tiger women claimed 10 of 16 events.
The Tigers will now begin preparations for the 2013 SEC Championships, which run Feb. 19-23 at the Texas A&M Student Recreation Center in College Station, Texas.
Auburn Swimming & Diving Results
January 26, 2013
James E. Martin Aquatic Center - Auburn, Ala.
Men: Florida 167, Auburn 133
Women: Auburn 161, Florida 138
Auburn Top Finishers - Men:
1M Diving: 1. McKean (348.68); 200 Medley Relay: 1. Owens, Ferguson, Chierighini, Disney-May (1:27.00); 1000 Free: 4. Grothe (9:12.72); 200 Free: 3. Disney-May (1:38.06); 100 Back: 1. Owens (47.78); 100 Breast: 1. Ferguson (54.46); 200 Fly: T3. Hancock (1:48.88) 50 Free: T1. Chierighini (19.84); 100 Free: 1. Chierighini (43.36); 200 Back: 1. Owens (1:44.84); 200 Breast: 2. Ferguson (1:58.70); 500 Free: T5. Grothe/Kramer (4:34.40); 100 Fly: 2. Mendes (48.99); 3M Diving: 1. McKean (392.70); 200 IM: 4. Hancock (1:51.50); 400 Free Relay: 2. Chierighini, Leon, Disney-May, Browning (2:56.59).
Auburn Top Finishers - Women:
3M Diving: 1. Calabretta (315.30); 200 Medley Relay: 1. Bos, La. Norberg, Scott, Riordan (1:38.45); 1000 Free: 3. Gardocki (9:46.30); 200 Free: 4. Scott (1:49.28) 100 Back: 1. Bos (53.78); 100 Breast: 1. La. Norberg (1:00.75); 200 Fly: 5. Merritt (2:02.85); 50 Free: 1. Riordan (22.74); 1M Diving: 1. Calabretta (285.68); 100 Free: 1. Riordan (49.35); 200 Back: 3. Vitarius (1:58.00); 200 Breast: 1. Lawrence (2:11.49); 500 Free: 5. Gardocki (4:59.70); 100 Fly: 1. Scott (53.23); 200 IM: 2. Scott (2:01.22); 400 Free Relay: 1. Riordan, Li. Norberg, Fonteno, Bos (3:20.14).