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    SEC Swimming and Diving Championships: Day One

    By: Sean Cartell
    SEC Digital Network

    Day One Results (PDF)

    KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (Feb. 15, 2012) – Following the opening day of the Southeastern Conference swimming and diving championships on Wednesday at the Allan Jones Aquatic Center, the Auburn and Tennessee men are tied for the championship lead through three events, while Tennessee holds the lead on the women’s side also through three events.

    The Auburn and Tennessee men each sit atop the standings with 106 points, while LSU and Georgia are both tied for third on the men’s side with 73 points apiece. Tennessee headlines the women’s team race with 118 points, while Auburn is second with 101 and LSU is third with 74.

    Auburn senior Vennie Dantin captured the women’s 1-meter diving championship, marking her school’s first title in that event since Marina Smith won back-to-back 1-meter crowns in 1989 and 1990. Dantin did so with a score of 332.40 to earn her second career SEC individual title, after having won the 2010 SEC women’s 3-meter crown.

    Tennessee won the women’s 200-yard medley relay for the second time in three years, featuring the quartet of Jenny Connolly, Molly Hannis, Kelsey Floyd and Caroline Simmons, with an SEC meet-record time of 1:35.33. It broke the previous meet record of 1:36.11 set by Auburn at last season’s championships in Gainesville.

    Auburn claimed the men’s 200-yard medley relay for the sixth consecutive year and the eighth time in the last nine seasons. The quartet of Kyle Owens, Stuart Ferguson, Marcelo Chierighini and Karl Krug won the event in a time of 1:24.38. It was shy of the SEC meet record time of 1:23.69 that Auburn set in 2009.

    Tennessee senior Ryan Helms took home the men’s 3-meter diving championship marking his first career SEC individual championship with a career-best score of 446.20. It was the first championship for Tennessee in that event since Phil Jones won in 2004.

    The Georgia quartet of Shannon Vreeland, Melanie Margalis, Jordan Mattern and Megan Romano used the fastest time in the country this season (6:57.09) to claim the women’s 800-yard freestyle relay. It is the third consecutive year that Georgia’s women have claimed the 800 freestyle relay crown.

    The Auburn foursome of Kyle Owens, James Disney-May, Allen Browning and Zane Grothe captured the men’s 800-yard freestyle relay in a time of 6:20.63. It marked Auburn’s first title in the event since the 2009 campaign.

    Day two of the 2012 SEC Swimming and Diving Championship begins at 10 a.m. ET at the Allan Jones Aquatic Center.

    For all of the latest information on SEC Swimming and Diving, log on to www.SECDigitalNetwork.com.

    SEC Swimming and Diving Championships Day 1

    Men’s Team Standings (Through Three Events): T1. Auburn 106, T1. Tennessee 106, T3. LSU 73, T3. Georgia 73, 5. Kentucky 71, 6. Florida 67, 7. South Carolina 63, 8. Alabama 24.

    Women’s Team Standings (Through Three Events): 1. Tennessee 118, 2. Auburn 101, 3. LSU 74, 4. Georgia 72, 5. South Carolina 67, 6. Florida 66, 7. Arkansas 59, 8. Alabama 58, 9. Vanderbilt 32, 10. Kentucky 30.

    Women’s 1-Meter Diving Final
    1. Vennie Dantin (AU) 332.40; 2. Victoria Lamp (UT) 326.25; 3. Courtney Forcucci (SC) 324.20; 4. Gaby Trudeau (UT) 315.10; 5. Jodi McGroarty (UT) 311.05; 6. Alex Bettridge (LSU) 302.60; 7. Paige McCleary (UA) 301.35; Anna Aguero (AU) 298.30.

    Women’s 200-Yard Medley Relay Final
    1. Tennessee (Connolly, Hannis, Floyd, Simmons) 1:35.33 (SEC meet record); 2. Auburn (Bos, Norberg, Scott, Vanderpool-Wallace) 1:36.47; 3. Florida (Beisel, Luthersdottir, Zalewski, Bateman) 1:37.29; 4. Georgia (Shickora, Molnar, Harrington, Locus) 1:37.62; 5. Alabama (Kinsey, Burchell, Vourna, Popa) 1:38.68; 6. LSU (White, Bussey, Kendall, Goates) 1:38.87; 7. Arkansas (Braun, Daniels, Whitbeck, White) 1:42.18.

    Men’s 200-Yard Medley Relay Final
    1. Auburn (Owens, Ferguson, Chierighini, Krug) 1:24.38; 2. Georgia (Arnold, Fink, Reynolds, Simmons) 1:26.16; 3. Florida (Homer, Elliott, Cieslak, deBorde) 1:26.28; 4. Tennessee (Henahan, Epperson, Hetland, Walsh) 1:26.73; 5. LSU (Young, Tuomola, Jungfleisch, Saco) 1:26.97; 6. South Carolina (Warner, Cave, Badillo, Seiler) 1:28.23; 7. Alabama (Shirley, Terry, Coci, Caciuc) 1:28.25.

    Men’s 3-Meter Diving Final
    1. Ryan Helms (UT) 446.20; 2. Greg Ferrucci (UK) 427.30; 3. Mauricio Robles (UT) 412.90; 4. John Santeiu (AU) 386.80; 5. John Fox (UK) 365.30; 6. Cole Miller (SC) 353.95; 7. Corey Cowger (UK) 351.60; 8. Fraser McKean (AU) 334.45.

    Women’s 800-Yard Freestyle Relay Final
    1. Georgia (Vreeland, Margalis, Mattern, Romano) 6:57.09; 2. Florida (Bohunicky, Beisel, Crippen, Fung) 7:00.32; 3. Tennessee (Frasier, Floyd, McNeilis, Gendron) 7:03.63; 4. Auburn (Gardocki, Jones, Fonteno, Scott) 7:06.47; 5. LSU (Kendall, Haley, Wood, White) 7:13.24; 6. Kentucky (Eppler, Kuethe, Myers, Wilson) 7:18.73; 7. South Carolina (Schaffer, Jonsson, Peteh, Brockington) 7:19.64; 8. Arkansas (Menzel, Sverrisdottir, Templin, Franklin) 7:21.27; 9. Alabama (Gwarjanski, Schwee, Gallo, Hixon) 7:26.53; 10. Vanderbilt (Thomas, Salce, Deardorf, Torres) 7:38.01.

    Men’s 800-Yard Freestyle Relay Final
    1. Auburn (Owens, Disney-May, Browning, Grothe) 6:20.63; 2. Florida (Cieslak, Signorin, Caldwell, Solaeche Gomez) 6:20.86; 3. Georgia (Hill, Markham, Fink, Benner) 6:25.63; 4. LSU (Greeff, Love, Hamilton, Kunkel) 6:28.85; 5. Tennessee (Slater, Rairden, Scheffer, Epperson) 6:29.49; 6. Kentucky (Green, Reed, Heidler, Gerotto) 6:30.42; 7. South Carolina (Rodriguez, Crawford, Covert, Kaden) 6:32.83.

    2012 SEC SWIMMING & DIVING CHAMPIONSHIPS
    Champion Quotes – Wednesday, Feb. 15

    VENNIE DANTIN – AUBURN
    Women’s 1-Meter Diving

    “This meet is one of my favorites of the whole year, and to be able to do this for myself and for the team is great. It’s not just an individual event at this meet; it’s the whole team. That’s what I am the most excited for, and since this was the first event I hope it gets all of the swimmers pumped up and the rest of the divers really going.”

    RYAN HELMS - TENNESSEE
    Men’s 3-Meter Diving

    (on the championships being at Allan Jones) "It does mean a lot. It's great to have family here. It's just all the better to have it in my home pool. It's the same place I practice every day, three hours a day. It does mean a lot more just to have it here. It's awesome to dive in the home pool in front of the home crowd."

    KELSEY FLOYD - TENNESSEE
    Women’s 200 Medley Relay Third Leg

    "Our divers started us off really well, and we wanted to keep that energy going. We knew that we could win this relay. We knew that Auburn had a good back half of that relay. We just really wanted to do this for the team. This is our home pool. No one beats us in the medley relay in our home pool."

    KARL KRUG – AUBURN
    Men’s 200 Medley Relay Anchor Leg

    “This is one of the best groups of guys I could know. We’re training partners every day, working on exchanges and trying to be perfect every day. They put me in a comfortable position, so I didn’t have to go super-fast or anything to pull it out. We have some things to work on, but I did just enough to win today so I was happy with it.”

    SHANNON VREELAND – GEORGIA
    Women’s 800 Free Relay Opening Leg

    “It’s always nice starting out the first session at SECs with a win for Georgia. We always want to represent Georgia to the best of our abilities. I feel like the 800 freestyle is really our race, and it’s always fun to start with a win.”

    KYLE OWENS – AUBURN
    Men’s 800 Free Relay Opening Leg

    “We've just been working really hard on it all year. Auburn is notorious for not having that strong of an 800 free relay, and this group decided that was going to change this year. And it has."