Auburn Men Open 2011-12 With Big Win at LSU
Oct. 21, 2011
BATON ROUGE, La. - The Auburn men's swimming & diving team won 15 of 16 events and posted seven NCAA provisional qualifying times, defeating conference rival LSU 218-82 on Friday afternoon at the LSU Natatorium to open the 2011-12 season.
Auburn improves to 1-0 overall (1-0 SEC) while LSU drops to 0-3 overall (0-2 SEC) in dual meet action.
"I think this was a great first meet of the season for our men," Auburn assistant coach Richard Long said. "They were anticipating swims and racing, and it translated well from what we've been doing in workouts. We raced really well. The confidence we've been building really showed up in our racing. This is probably the best we've been at this time of year over the last few years. I was very impressed with Chris Kramer in the distance events and Nimrod Hayet in the 200 fly and 200 IM, they were our two swimmers of the meet. But up and down the list, we were very good in just about everything."
Overall, Auburn won 15 of the 16 events and saw four swimmers, two divers and three relay teams record NCAA qualifying times and scores, posting extremely strong marks for the opening meet of the year.
Auburn started off with a bang as the Tigers' top two 200 medley relay teams recorded NCAA `B' cut times in taking the top two spots. Kyle Owens, Chris Manning, Hayet and Karl Krug posted a 1:29.22 - anchored by Krug's sizzling freestyle split of 19.69 - while Max Murphy, Stuart Ferguson, Marcelo Chierighini and TJ Leon went 1:29.29 to finish just .07 behind their teammates.
In addition to his opening relay victory, Hayet, a sophomore from Israel, earned his first two collegiate individual wins in the meet. He took top honors in the 200 butterfly with a 1:48.84 to outpace LSU's closest competitor by more than a full second, then came back at the end of the meet with a 1:51.20 in the 200 IM to lead an Auburn sweep of the top four spots. Freshman Allen Browning (1:51.84) was second, junior Stuart Ferguson was third (1:52.53) and sophomore Spencer Kerns took fourth (1:53.53).
Auburn also got a pair of victories from sophomore distance specialist Zane Grothe, who picked right up where he left off after his outstanding freshman campaign. Grothe took top honors in the 1000 free with a 9:15.91 - only five seconds off his career-best time in the event from last year - then earned a win in the 500 free with a 4:33.76. Kramer was second in the 1000 with a 9:24.00, a career-best, then had a 4:36.85 in the 500 free, surpassing his best time from last season.
Murphy was a two-time winner for Auburn in the backstroke events, taking top honors in the 100 backstroke with an NCAA `B' cut time of 48.55. He would also win the 200 back with a 1:48.72.
Ferguson swept the breaststroke events for the Tigers as well. He posted an NCAA `B' cut time of 55.21 in the 100 breast, then came back with a 2:00.51 in the 200 breast to earn another win.
The sprint events were also controlled by Auburn. Senior Karl Krug got his season off to a fine start with a 20.18 to win the 50 free and post an NCAA `B' cut. Sophomore Marcelo Chierighini also earned a `B' cut time with a 43.99 in the 100 free, while Drew Modrov was second in 44.76.
The other individual swimming wins went to junior Kyle Owens, who clocked a 49.16 to take the top spot in the 100 butterfly, and senior Drew Modrov, who went 1:38.77 in the 200 freestyle to lead a sweep of the top four spots; Browning (1:39.96) was second.
Auburn posted one more `B' cut time with James Disney-May, Grothe, Murphy and Owens clocking a 3:00.61 to win the 400 freestyle relay by nearly three seconds over their nearest competition.
In the diving well, sophomore John Santieu got his first collegiate win with a 332.10 to take victory on the 1-meter board and post an NCAA Zone qualifying score. Santieu would finish second on the 3-meter board with another Zone score of 357.68, while senior Adam Godzinski also posted a zone qualifier with a 324.00.
The Tigers will have next week off from competition before returning to action Friday, Nov. 4, as the Penn State Nittany Lions visit town for a 3 p.m. dual meet at the James E. Martin Aquatics Center.
Auburn Swimming & Diving
Team Scores: Auburn 218, LSU 82 (men)
Auburn Top Finishers:
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