Feb. 18, 2010
CHAPEL HILL, N.C. – Through the first seven events at the 2010 Atlantic Coast Conference Women’s Swimming & Diving Championships the Florida State women’s swimming and diving team is in sole possession of third place with 202 points. Following the first men’s diving event Florida State’s men are currently in first place with 47 points. Highlights from University of North Carolina’s Koury Natatorium included an ACC title for Terry Horner in the men’s three-meter dive and a third place finish for Katherine Adham in the women’s one-meter dive. Freshman Caroline Smith also broke Florida State’s oldest record in the 500 free event.
Senior Terry Horner continued to collect hardware and reset Florida State records as he earned his second three-meter dive conference title, and his third ACC Championship overall. His score of 458.50 in the finals is the highest score ever by a Seminole in the event, and the win earned the Seminole men 20 team points.
“Terry brought his degree of difficulty up to it’s highest in the contest,” said Head Diving Coach Patrick Jeffrey. “This means so much more than just a conference championship win tonight. The top three performers were all on the World Championship team last summer, so this makes a real statement for Terry to come out on top.”
In addition to Horner, four other Seminole men earned team points in the three-meter dive. Junior Jordan Horsley finished eighth in the event with a finals score of 347.50, contributing 11 team points. Although they failed to reach the finals, teammates Landon Marzullo, Nick Klein and Mike Neubacher finished in ninth, 12th and 15th place, for nine, five and two points respectively.
The Seminoles success on the boards did not stop with the men on day two as every Seminole woman earned points for the team in the one-meter event. Junior Katherine Adham led the way with a third place finish in the women’s one-meter dive finals. With a score of 308.95 in the finals Adham earned her first ACC medal, 16 team points and qualifies for the NCAA zone diving championships. Seniors Aleia Monden and Katie Sirounis were right behind Adham in the event with fourth and fifth place finishes, respectively, garnering 15 and 14 points each. Elysse Rowland and Jaq Schroeder did not reach the finals but their preliminary round finishes of 10th and 13th place were rewarded with seven and four team points.
“It was a huge day for Florida State diving with 10 of 11 divers scoring in competition,” Jeffrey said. “Over the next two days we still have some of the divers’ strongest events and I am looking forward to that after such a strong start today.”
Despite a sluggish start in the swimming preliminaries Thursday morning the Seminoles fought hard and finished strong in the finals Thursday night.
Freshman Caroline Smith kicked off the consolation finals by breaking the longest standing Florida State swimming record in the 500 free. Her time of 4:45.69 led her to a first place finish in the consolation round and ninth place finish overall. The previous Florida State women’s 500 free record was 4:45.80, set by Sara Link back in 1984. In addition to Smith’s record, freshman Marissa Harrington‘s time of 4:46.41 and sophomore Charlotte Broadbent‘s time of 4:46.93 in the consolation finals are now the third and fourth fastest times in Seminole history.
In the 200 IM consolation finals sophomore Stephanie Sarandos set a new personal best with a 2:00.18 time, earning 9 team points for the Seminoles. Freshman Kristine Polley (2:01.02) and sophomore Jessica Sabotin (2:01.04) also set new personal bests and earned the team seven and six points respectively.
“Although we’re disappointed we did not have more athletes in the top eight finals, we couldn’t be more pleased with the performances of everyone in the consolation finals,” said Head Coach Neil Harper. “Part of their success in the 500 free and 200 IM finals was likely from the confidence of having a large Seminole presence in each event. With three Seminoles competing in the same heat of each event they were able to pace push each other all the way to the end. With all of those performers being freshmen and sophomores we know we can only expect to see continued growth and success.”
Junior Brittany Selts set a new personal record in the 50 free with a time of 22.74 in the preliminary round. Her time also earned her a spot as the fourth fastest in Seminole history. As the only Seminole swimmer to reach the top eight finals Thursday, Selts finished in eighth place with a time of 23.11, and contributed 11 points towards FSU’s team total.
“Brittany is having a great meet so far,” said Harper. “She was the only top eight qualifier today and we’re really excited for her as she is starting to find her place. She fell slightly in the finals of the 50 free but she’s earned the most individual points for the team so far and was a big part of the 200 free relay team’s performance tonight.”
In the final event of the evening, the 200 free relay, Florida State came out with its best performance all season. Selts, junior C.J. Hendry and seniors Stevi Steinhauer and Shanda Casella finished the race in fourth place with a time of 1:30.69.
“The relay team was so close to breaking the school record [1:30.33] which is especially significant because they were competing without the fast suits used last season,” Harper said.
Tomorrow the women return to the pool with the 400 IM, 100 fly, 200 free, 100 breast, 100 back and three-meter dive scheduled. The men’s diving squad is also set to compete tomorrow in the one-meter dive.
At the end of day two Virginia still leads the women’s team standings with 300 points, followed by UNC with 225, Florida State with 202 and Virginia Tech with 144.5 points.
“The divers outdid everyone today and were a tremendous asset,” Harper said. “They moved us away from Virginia Tech and closer to North Carolina.”
On the men’s side Florida State is in the lead after the first diving event with 47 team points, followed closely by Duke with 45 points. Virginia Tech is in third place with 18 points.
Fans can watch all of the ACC Championship events live online by clicking here.
Full meet results can be found by clicking here.
For more news and coverage of the Seminoles stay tuned to www.seminoles.com or follow the team on Twitter @fsu_swimming.