Nov. 9, 2007
AUBURN - The No. 1-ranked Auburn women's swimming and diving team leads Tennessee, 94-70 following the first day of a dual meet at the James E. Martin Aquatic Center. The two-day meet resumes at 10 a.m., Saturday.
The Tigers picked up an automatic "A" cut and 15 NCAA provisional "B" cuts in the first day of competition. Sophomore Ava Ohlgren, the defending NCAA champion in the 400 IM, led the way with her "A" cut time of 4:14.82 in the event.
Overall, Auburn won five of the nine events on Friday and holds a 24-point lead despite not fielding any divers in the meet.
"I thought we were a little rough at first, which showed that we have not had to do a meet yet," said co-head women's coach Dorsey Tierney-Walker. "We had some really tough racing tonight and I was really pleased."
Two of Auburn's five wins came from freshmen as Micah Martindale won the 500 free and Melanie Roberts picked up a win in the 200 breast.
Martindale led a pack of four Tigers in the 500 free as Auburn claimed four of the top five spots. Martindale and Bird earned a NCAA provisional times of 4:49.09 and 4:49.89, respectively, in the event.
"The distance swimmers such as Micah Martindale, Maggie Bird, Chelsea Haser and Blakeley Bunch had really good 500s," said Tierney-Walker.
Auburn started off the meet with a NCAA provisional time in the 200 free relay as the team of Caitlin Geary, Emile Ewing, Kara Denby and Emily Kukors finished second in 1:32.81.
Ohlgren (4:14.82) followed with her "A" cut victory in the 400 IM, followed by Kukors, finishing second with her "B" cut time of 4:18.99. Ewing and Geary posted "B" cut times in the 100 free, finishing third and fourth, respectively. Ewing finished in 50.07 while Geary with Geary right behind her at 50.12.
Three more Tigers earned "B" times in the 200 back as Auburn took four of the top five spots. Melissa Marik picked up the win as she finished in 1:58.24. She was followed by Julianne McLane (2nd, 1:58.43), and Erica Meissner (4th, 1:59.07).
Roberts picked up her first win as a Tiger in the 200 breast, taking the victory with a "B" cut time of 2:16.11. She was followed by fellow freshman Josefin Wede as she finished runner-up with a NCAA-provisional time of 2:16.63.
Ohlgren, matching up against Tennessee's Christina Magnuson in the 100 fly, finished second with a "B" cut time of 54.34. Kristen Hastrup finished behind her in third (55.50) with Roberts (56.49) rounding out the top five.
In the final swimming event of the night, Auburn claimed the top two spots in the 400 medley relay as both finished with "B" cut times.
The team of Marik, Roberts, Ohlgren and Kukors led the Tigers to the win with a time of 3:42.50 while the team of McLane, Wede, Hastrup and Geary followed with a time of 3:43.07.
Holding the lead after the first day of the meet, Tierney-Walker hopes to see the same intensity out of her team on Saturday.
"I think it is important to come back and be just as intense on the second day, and that is one of the reasons that we do these two-day meets," said Tierney-Walker. "It challenges them to be just as good, if not better, on the next day when you are a little bit more tired and we are just going to keep challenging them to work hard."