It only took Hugo Gonzalez four months to set his first Auburn swimming record -- and he did it in a dominating 1:42.02.
Gonzalez, the freshman phenom for Auburn `s men's swimming team, became the fastest Auburn man ever in the 200 IM on Friday night at the Georgia Invitational, besting the field by over a second and Joe Patching's almost two-year-old program record by .19 seconds.
"As a freshman, unshaved and untapered to go 1:42.0 is pretty good," Associate Head Coach Sergio Lopez said. "That's a good sign, swimming against some of the best IMers in the country that are juniors and seniors and have a lot more experience in short course-yards."
Though Gonzalez' swim was the highlight there were still plenty of other swims and dives to talk about.
For example, the 200 free relay squad of Zach Apple, Santiago Grassi, Liam McCloskey and Peter Holoda clocked a 1:17.92, a season-best and among the five fastest times in the nation this season. Apple's 19.47 leadoff swim and Holoda's 19.18 anchor leg were both third-fastest in the field as Auburn missed the NCAA Automatic Qualifying Time by .30 seconds.
There was also Apple's 19.23 in the 50 free, a season-best by over half-a-second and one of the 10 fastest time in the nation this season.
Then there was the 400 medley relay of Gonzalez, Tommy Brewer, Grassi and Holoda who went 3:08.30, a top-10 national time. Gonzalez led off in 46.24, which makes him the ninth-fastest performer in the 100 back in program history.
"We started out a little slow this morning but the kids came out and did a very good job tonight, racing hard," Lopez said. "There were a couple of great things we did today. Our relays were very good. Zach Apple did an awesome job. Overall it was a great start to the meet."
Not to be overlooked were Auburn's divers as Scott Lazeroff took third (366.70), Pete Turnham fourth (324.35) and Logan Andrews seventh (316.2) on the 3-meter and Alison Maillard (274.25) took third on the 1-meter.
"Overall it was a solid performance," diving coach Jeff Shaffer said. "I think the five days off over Thanksgiving made us a little bit rusty and we weren't as sharp as we were before the break. It was a positive note that everyone finaled and got a second list in."
After one day, Auburn stands in fourth with 200 points. California leads with 308 points, Michigan is second (298), host Georgia is third (208) and Virginia is fifth (100).
The competition continues on Tuesday with prelims at 8:30 am CT and finals at 4 pm from the Gabrielsen Natatorium.