Nov. 18, 2005
Atlanta, Ga. – The Florida State men’s (No. 15) and women’s (No.16) swimming and diving teams hold a commanding lead after day one of the Georgia Tech Invitational in Atlanta, Ga. on Friday, November 18, 2005. The men are out in front with a score of 438, followed by Georgia Tech (306), Western Kentucky (209) and Florida Atlantic (136). On the women’s side, Florida State leads with a score of 363, followed by Rice (175), WKU (172.50), Tech (164), FAU (145.50), Gardner-Webb (83), Miami (81) and New Orleans (28).
The Seminoles had outstanding performances a crossed the board as they took first place in 11 of the 12 events.
“We are swimming well and there is a lot of good competition,” said head coach Neil Harper. “Allowing all of our kids to get second swims is really important and that is the main thing that we are focused on. When we can get kids into finals then we can score big and continue to stay on a roll.”
The meet started off with things going Florida State’s way. In the very first event, the women’s 200 free relay, the Seminoles’ team of senior Carrie Ellis (Valrico, Fla.), freshman Christie Raliegh (Boca Raton, Fla.) and sophomores Abbie King (Brunswick, Maine) and Lauren Sparg (Durban, South Africa) took first place with an NCAA B qualifying standard time of 1:31.59, which set a new GTAC pool record.
“It is a good omen,” said Harper. “I feel really good about the women’s 200 free relay. All four legs clicked well. Chrisite (Raleigh) led it off then Carrie (Ellis) just did an awesome leg to get us way out in front and then Abbie (King) had a great split for her. The biggest surprise in it was Lauren Sparg. I rolled the dice on her and I saw what she could do. She really got fired up and had a great leg, which was a bit faster then I thought she would. It was just a great swim.”
The men’s 200 free relay team of senior Joel Roycik (Winter Park, Fla.), junior Alex Kennon (Winter Haven, Fla.) and sophomores Jarryd Botha (Worcester, South Africa) and Ed Denton (Maidenhead, England) swam next and did not disappoint as they took first place with an NCAA B qualifying standard time of 1:20.70.
Sophomore Lindsay Kenney (Plano, Texas) then continued Florida State’s theme of NCAA B qualifying standard times as she recorded one of her own winning the 500 free in 4:53.79. Freshman Ann Cipoletti (Charleston, W. Va.) claim a first place finish in the 200 IM with a time of 2:05.83. Ellis continued to impress as she picked up a win in the 50 free with an NCAA B qualifying standard time of 23.02 edging out Raleigh who swam an NCAA B qualifying standard time of 23.03. In the prelims Ellis recorded a personal best and a NCAA A qualifying standard time of 22.83.
Junior Steve Roof (Canton, Ohio) took first place as he swam an NCAA B qualifying standard time of 4:25.46 in the 500 free. Sophomore Danny Keeling (Westminster, Colo.) won the 200 IM in 1:50.83 while Roycik took first place in the 50 free for the Seminoles with a time of 20.36.
Florida State’s great night continued into the diving events. Junior Brittany Lerew (Orlando, Fla.) took first place in the 1M with 317.40 points. On the men’s side, the Seminoles finished the 3M by claiming spots two through six with sophomore Alex Tilbrook (Largo, Fla.) leading the way in second place with 380.75 points.
“Even though we didn’t win the men’s diving it was still a huge point scorer for us,” said Harper. “It was a highly competitive event and a good one for us.”
Florida State capped off the day one’s events in a similar fashion as they started them. The women’s 400 medley relay team of Ellis, Sparg and juniors Romy Altmann (Cape Town, South Africa) and Lauren Brick (Culpeper, Va.) took first place with an NCAA B qualifying standard time of 3:42.43.
The men’s 400 medley relay concluded the night as FSU’s team of Botha, Roycik and sophomore Billy Jamerson (Savannah, Ga.) and Carl Marais (Pretoria, South Africa) claimed first place with a time of 3:18.36.
The Georgia Tech Invitational will continue with prelims tomorrow at 10:00 a.m. and finals at 5:30 p.m. and then on Sunday with prelims at 9:30 a.m. and finals at 3:30 p.m.