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    SEC Swimming & Diving Today: November 30

    Georgia's Koski Qualifies For NCAA Championships

    ATHENS, Ga. - Freshman Matias Koski qualified for the 2013 NCAA Championships to highlight Georgia's showing on Friday in the UGA Fall Invitational at Gabrielsen Natatorium.

    Koski, already twice named SEC Freshman of the Week, posted a time of 4:15.55 in winning the 500 freestyle. His time was an A cut for the NCAAs, which will be held March 28-30 in Indianapolis. The 4:15.55 is fifth-best in school history. Koski was followed Friday by Georgia teammates Martin Grodzki (4:16.72) and Andrew Gemmell (4:18.98) were second and third, respectively.

    Megan Romano won the 50 freestyle with a time of 22.33. Shannon Vreeland went 4:38.27 to win the 500 freestyle, edging teammate Allison Schmitt by 1/100th of a second.

    The 200 freestyle relay of Jessica Graber, Maddie Locus, Chantal Van Landeghem and Romano had a winning time of 1:28.05. That is also an A-cut time, but under a new rule at least one of the swimmers must qualify individually for the NCAAs for the relay to advance.

    The Lady Bulldogs rolled up 335 points in the first day of competition, followed by Cal in second with 266 and Virginia in third with 180. The Bulldogs stand third with 200 points, trailing Cal's 261 and Virginia's 211.

    "I was really proud of our kids today," Georgia coach Jack Bauerle said. "In this meet the points don't mean as much to us. It's more about racing and trying to go as fast as you can. We had a lot of great swims today. This was probably the best first day we've ever had. But it won't mean as much if we don't keep it going on Saturday. We need to keep that momentum going."

    The UGA Fall Invitational will continue on Saturday with swimming prelims at 9:30 a.m., diving prelims at 11 a.m., and finals at 5 p.m. There is no cost for admission to Gabrielsen Natatorium inside the Ramsey Center. The invitational will conclude on Sunday.

    Auburn Relays Earn NCAA "A" Cuts Friday at Georgia Invite
    ATHENS, Ga. – Auburn posted the fastest men’s 200-yard freestyle relay time in the country this year, and the men’s and women’s 400 medley relays also posted NCAA automatic qualifying times to highlight first-day action at the Georgia Fall Invitational on Friday.
    The Tigers earned three NCAA ‘A’ cuts and 15 ‘B’ cuts on a day in which most of the Auburn team was swimming without rest and contesting preliminaries without their “fast” racing suits.
    “I’m really happy with the way the team approached finals tonight,” Auburn Head Coach Brett Hawke said. “They raced tough this morning, but they knew their backs were against the wall without the suits on. I felt like the atmosphere was really good and the leadership was great. I mean, three A-cuts is just outstanding with little rest. It sets us up really well for the rest of the meet.”
    The team of Chierighini, James Disney-May, Kyle Owens and TJ Leon opened the session by posting an NCAA automatic qualifying time of 1:17.55, the fastest time in the nation so far this year, to out-touch runner-up California by nearly a full second. Chierighini’s leadoff split of 19.37 was the second-fastest 50 freestyle swim in the country this year, and a blistering third-leg split of 18.90 by Owens put the race out of reach.
    In the final events of the night, the women’s top relay squad of Jillian Vitarius, Micah Lawrence, Olivia Scott and Hannah Riordan clocked an NCAA ‘A’ cut time of 3:33.25 to take second place in the women’s 400 medley relay final, while the ‘B’ squad of Emily Bos, Lauren Norberg, Megan Fonteno and Haley Krakoski won their heat with a time of 3:36.14 to finish Xth overall.
    The women’s 200 free relay earned a ‘B’ cut as Riordan, Bos, Krakoski and Aubrey Peacock posted a 1:30.30 to take third place.
    Chierighini claimed another win later in the session, posting a 19.50 in the 50 freestyle final. Disney-May earned a win in the consolation final with a season-best 20.15, and Kyle Owens (20.27) and TJ Leon (20.56) took second and fourth, respectively, in the C-final.
    “It’s incredible how good Marcelo is swimming right now,” Hawke said. “He’s training at a level unlike anything I’ve ever seen. He’s getting more in the league of a Cesar Cielo, which is scary, but it’s nice. He’s putting himself in a new category.”
    Zane Grothe shaved six seconds off his preliminary time to win the consolation final of the men’s 500 freestyle, splitting a 24.27 on his final 50 yards to track down Cal’s Adam Hinshaw and touch first in a winning time of 4:18.39 for an NCAA ‘B’ cut. After the championship final, Grothe’s time ranked as the eighth-fastest in the nation so far this year. Sophomore Tommy McKee finished eighth in the championship final with a time of 4:25.32; his time of 4:24.09 in the morning preliminaries was a personal-best.
    Katie Gardocki won the C-final of the 500 free, posting an NCAA ‘B’ cut time of 4:44.73 to knock a little more than five seconds off her season-best coming into the meet.
    Junior Olivia Scott and senior Micah Lawrence posted a pair of PRs and NCAA ‘B’ cut times in the 200 IM to win their respective races. Scott claimed top honors in the consolation final with a 1:58.63, the eighth-fastest time in Auburn history, and Lawrence posted a 1:59.15 – the 10th-fastest all-time at Auburn - to win the C-final.
    In the men’s 200 IM, Owens clocked an NCAA provisional time of 1:48.04 to take sixth in the championship final, and Alex Hancock went 1:49.03 to take a third-place finish in the consolation final.
    Day two of the Georgia Fall Invitational gets underway at 9:30 a.m. ET (8:30 a.m. CT) Saturday with preliminaries in the 400 IM, 100 back, 200 free, 100 breast and 100 fly. Auburn’s divers will also join the competition tomorrow with men’s 3-meter and women’s 1-meter events. Live results are available via, and fans can follow @AuburnSwimming on Twitter for updates from the pool.

    Alabama Swimming and Diving Freshman Picks up Win on Day One of GT Invitational
    ATLANTA, Ga. – Alabama swimming and diving rookie Brian Westlake won the 500 freestyle on day one of the Georgia Tech Invitational at the GT Aquatic Center Friday evening.
    Westlake touched the wall with a time of 4:24.92, nearly a second ahead of the field. It marked his third win in the 500 this season. On the women’s side of the meet, sophomore Lisa Bogosian turned in the Tide’s top finish, taking third place off the 3-meter springboard with a score of 329.70 points. Junior Paige McCleary was fifth off the 3-meter after tallying 319.70 points.
    The Tide returns to action Saturday with the 400 individual medley, the 100 butterfly, the 200 freestyle, the 100 breaststroke and the 100 backstroke as well as the women’s 1-meter and men’s 3-meter springboard events.

    Gators Women in First and Men Second After Day One at Ohio State Invitational
    GAINESVILLE, Fla. – The University of Florida swimming and diving teams concluded a successful first day of competition on a record-setting Friday at the Ohio State Invitational. After the first night of competition, Florida’s women are in first place with 264 points and the men are second behind Ohio State with 545.5 points through six events. Florida’s men won two events and set two meet records, as the women had a solid night with two NCAA “A” cut times on the night.
    The Gator women had a commanding start with a win in the 200 free relay. The group of freshman Natalie Hinds (Midland, Texas), junior Ellese Zalewski (Melbourne, Australia), freshman Lindsey McKnight (Coral Springs, Fla.) and Kaitlin Frehling (St. Petersburg, Fla.) set a new meet record in a time of 1:29.49 for a NCAA “A” cut. Hinds’ 50 free leadoff split of 22.37 was a personal best and a NCAA “B” cut time.
    UF also earned some valuable points as the group of freshman Sinead Russell (Burlington, Ontario), freshman Sierra Kuhn (Verona, Wis.), freshman Ashlee Linn (Southfield, Mich.) and sophomore Shelby McLean (Orlando, Fla.) took eighth in a time of 1:32.88.
    In the 500 free, six different women scored for the Gators and each earned NCAA cuts. Junior Elizabeth Beisel (North Kingstown, R.I.) finished second in a stellar time of 4:34.54. She set a new personal record in the event and secured a NCAA “A” time, which automatically qualifies her for the NCAA Championships in that event.
    Also scoring for the Gators in the A-Final was freshman Jessica Thielmann (Newcastle, England) who took third in a time of 4:39.97, just missing the A-cut time but recording a personal best in the event. Sophomore Molly Dubrasky (Estero, Fla.) finished fifth with a 4:44.16, senior Jamie Bohunicky (Gainesville, Fla.) finished 11th in 4:43.28, junior Alicia Mathieu was 12th with a 4:43.47 and sophomore Jordan Smith scored in 16th place with a time of 4:47.72.
    Sophomore Rebecca Rainer (Richmond, Va.) swam her way into the A-final of the 200 IM where she finished seventh in a time of 2:00.84, another NCAA “B” cut for the Gators. Also recording “B” cut times in the event was McKnight who swam a personal and team best 1:58.42 to finish 11th, Linn was just behind her as she touched in 1:58.59 and senior Sarra Lajnef (Tunis, Tunisia) was 15th in 2:02.22.
    Hinds followed up her relay start with a third place finish in the 50 free, clocking in at 22.52. Zalewski and Frehling joined her in the A-final as they finished fifth and eighth respectively and Bohunicky nabbed the top spot of the B-final with a 23.02 to finish 11th overall.
    Florida’s relay group of Beisel, junior Hilda Luthersdottir (Harfnarfjordur, Iceland), Hinds and Bohunicky combined for a third place finish in the 400 medley relay with a time of 3:36.62. Beisel’s 100 back leadoff leg was a season-best and another “B” cut time for her.
    In diving, freshman Emily Mosher (Cincinnati, Ohio) added points with her seventh place finish on the three-meter board with a score of 250.85.
    On the men’s side, the Gators took second and third in the 200 freestyle relay. UF’s group of junior Brad deBorde (Longwood, Fla.), sophomore Matt Curby (Oviedo, Fla.), sophomore Christian Homer (Trinidad-Tobago) and sophomore Ricky Munch (Clifton, Va.) took second with a time of 1:19.94. Then just behind them were junior Marcin Cieslak (Warsaw, Poland), junior Sebastien Rousseau (Cape Town, South Africa), sophomore Eduardo Solaeche-Gomez (Madrid, Spain) and junior Levar Goossen (Rotterdam, Netherlands) in third with a time of 1:21.12.
    The 500 free was a strong event for the UF men as well. Junior Connor Signorin (East Windsor, N.J.) tied for third, coming in at 4:21.68 and freshman Ryan Rosenbaum (Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.) was fifth in 4:22.43. Freshman Arthur Frayler (Fort Washington, Pa.) also secured a NCAA “B” but with his 12th place finish in a time of 4:24.94. Freshman Pawel Werner (Wroclaw, Poland), freshman Justin Kaisrlik (Clermont, Fla.) and sophomore Thomas Veale (Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.) also scored as they finished 13th, 14th and 15th respectively.
    In the 200 IM, the Gators swept the top three spots and another meet record. Rousseau finished first in a time of 1:44.02 to just miss a NCAA “A” cut and set the new meet record in the event. Sophomore Dan Wallace (North Berwick, Scotland) came in second, clocking in at 1:44.94 with another NCAA “B” cut and Solaeche-Gomez was third as he finished in 1:45.67.
    Sophomore Carlos Omana (Miami, Fla.) was eighth with a time of 1:48.35, Cieslak was 11th in a solid time of 1:45.34 and Curby took 13th to round out the scorers for Florida.
    That Gators came right back and grabbed another victory as deBorde swam a blistering 50 free in a time of 19.54 to set a meet record. His time is just .20 seconds from a NCAA “A” cut. Homer also competed in the A-final as he took ninth in a time of 20.77. Werner and Munch scored in the event as well with 11th and 15th place finishes.
    Florida’s relay group of Homer, sophomore Matt Elliott (Peoria, Ill.), Cieslak and deBorde finished up a solid night with a second place finish in the 400 medley relay. They combined for a time of 3:11.60 for a NCAA “B” cut.
    The Gators will be back in action tomorrow morning for prelims beginning at 10 a.m. ET.