Dec. 2, 2012
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ATHENS, Ga. - Seven Auburn swimmers posted NCAA `B' cut times, and 32 Tigers advanced to finals in their respective events Sunday on the final morning of prelims at the Georgia Fall Invitational.
Junior Marcelo Chierighini continued his strong performance at this meet with the top qualifying time in the 100-yard freestyle, clocking a 43.26 for an `B' cut time and his fastest swim of the year so far. James Disney-May went 44.86 to earn a spot in the consolation final, and TJ Leon's 45.65 got him back for the C-final.
Zane Grothe will be pulling off a tough double later today. He posted a 1:45.04 in the 200 butterfly prelims, the top qualifying time of the morning, to earn another NCAA `B' cut and qualify for the final. Within 90 minutes of that swim, he was to compete in the timed finals of the 1,650 freestyle before swimming the final of the 200 fly tonight. Three Tigers made the consolation final of the men's 200 fly as Alex Hancock (1:49.86), Stuart Ferguson (1:50.68) and Kevin Behrens (1:51.16) posted season-best times.
Ferguson will also try for a double tonight. He swam his way into the 200 breaststroke championship final with a 2:01.51 to earn the eighth overall qualifying spot; the 200 breast and 200 fly are back-to-back events in the meet program.
Junior Peter Haas had a breakout swim in the 200 breast, eclipsing the 2-minute mark for the first time in his career with a 1:59.98 to qualify fourth overall for the championship final. Jordan Jones (2:04.59) and Chandler Gerlach (2:05.41) earned their way into the C-final.
And in the men's 200 backstroke, Kyle Owens breezed into the championship final with a prelim time of 1:45.42 to qualify sixth overall. Freshman Jacob Siar made the consolation final with a 1:47.07, and Youssef Hammoud (1:48.88) and Brandon Siemasko (1:48.92) qualified for the C-final.
On the women's side, Jillian Vitarius and Sarah Reynolds kicked off the morning by posting NCAA `B' cuts in the 200 backstroke. Vitarius qualified for the championship final with an eighth-place time of 1:57.01, and Reynolds made the C-final with her 1:59.07. Aubrey Peacock also swam her way into the C-final with a 1:59.83.
Senior Micah Lawrence had no trouble posting the second-fastest time of the morning in the 200 breast with a 2:11.21 to get in the championship final. She will be joined in the A-final by classmate Laura Johnson, whose 2:16.04 was the seventh-fastest time of the prelims. Lauren Norberg (2:17.94) and Abby Duncan (2:18.06) made the consolation final, and Tryshia Centeno (2:20.23), Sarah Peterson (2:20.98) and Lindsey Norberg (2:21.22) will swim the C-final.
In the 100 free, Hannah Riordan had the 10th-best time of the morning with a B-cut mark of 49.70 to qualify for the consolation final. Olivia Scott will swim the consolation as well with a 50.00, while Emily Bos (50.10), Haley Krakoski (50.50) and Becca Jones (50.63) made the C-final. And in the 200 fly, Alex Merritt (2:01.69) and Megan Fonteno (2:01.70) qualified for the C-final.
Timed finals of the 1650 free and finals in men's and women's platform diving were to take place between sessions. The last session of finals gets underway at 3 p.m. ET (2 p.m. CT) here at the Gabrielsen Natatorium, and fans can follow @AuburnSwimming on Twitter for the latest updates.