Oct. 23, 2012
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AUBURN - Auburn swimmer Jillian Vitarius was named the SEC Freshman of the Week, and junior Marcelo Chierighini earned his second straight nod as SEC Swimmer of the Week, the conference office announced Wednesday.
Vitarius, a freshman from Kingwood, Texas, has made an immediate impact on the Auburn women's team through just two meets. She has won three races in Auburn's victories over Alabama and LSU, including a sweep of the two backstroke events last Saturday against LSU. She recorded NCAA `B' cut times in both events, including a 54.40 in the 100-yard backstroke and a 1:56.98 in the 200 back, to lead an Auburn sweep of the top four spots both times. Her time in the 200 back ranks as the third-fastest in the nation so far this season, and she has the sixth-best national time in the 100 back.
Chierighini, a junior from Sao Paulo, Brazil, was named the conference's Swimmer of the Week for the second consecutive week. After an outstanding performance against Alabama, he lowered his times significantly in both the 50 and 100 freestyle in Saturday's meet with LSU. He shaved seven-tenths off his best time in the 100 free to post a 43.77, the nation's second-fastest time this season. Chierighini then dropped two-tenths off his 50 free time from a week ago, clocking a 20.04 to win his race going away. His 50 free time is just .01 off the nation's best so far in 2012-13.
The two Auburn honorees this week have combined for 10 victories through just two meets. Vitarius has won all three of her individual races through the first two meets, and Chierighini has posted seven wins - four in individual events and three in relays. Combined, Auburn's swimmers and divers have won 54 of 58 events through the first two dual meets; Auburn's men are a perfect 29-for-29 while the women have won 25 of 29, including 24 of 25 swimming events.
Auburn's women will be back in action at home this Friday, Oct. 26, with a 4 p.m. dual meet against Notre Dame at the James E. Martin Aquatic Center. The men will return the following week, joining the women for the team's third SEC dual meet of the season as they travel to Kentucky on Friday, Nov. 2.