Feb. 27, 2009
COLLEGE PARK, Md. – The Florida State men’s swimming and diving team used three silver medal performances and five school records to strengthen its hold on second-place at the ACC Swimming and Diving Championships in College Park, Md. The Seminoles have 422 points which is more than 75 points ahead of third-place Georgia Tech.
“It’s been an incredible meet and we responded,” FSU head coach Neil Harper said. “I think we made the most of every opportunity we had and I’m just proud of how we came together. I think you saw are guys grit and determination and will to race.”
Fifth-year senior Jarryd Botha was the first Seminole on the podium during the evening. Botha broke his own school record in the 100 fly with a second-place finish. The Worcester, South Africa native touched the wall in 46.23 just .02 out of first-place. Junior Corey Swanson turned in a 12th-place performance with a personal best time of 47.83.
“Jarryd led the whole race right up until the last yard,” Harper said. “To lose by a couple of hundredths is tough, but it was an incredible time.”
Junior Scott Thacker earned the Garnet and Gold’s second silver medal of the evening in the 100 breast. Thacker swam a personal best time of 53.30 to take home second. Sophomore Rob Holderness tied for sixth-place with a time of 53.84, while Swanson swimming his second event of the evening placed eighth (54.26). Sophomore Matt Shead also scored in the 100 breast finishing tied for ninth with a time of 54.64.
“We’ve always known what Scott was capable of doing and it was great to see him put together the perfect race,” Harper said. “I was really excited for him.”
After lasting 15 years, the school record in the 400 individual medley was broken twice on Friday. Fifth-year senior Kyle Young reset his record with a fifth-place showing of 3:47.93. Junior Shawn Erickson also scored for FSU with a 16th-place finish (3:57.15).
In the 200 free junior Andy Hodgson lowered his school record and finished fourth in a time of 1:34.80. Fifth-year senior Ed Denton improved his position by placing 13th with a time of 1:37.65 while sophomore Stephen Pendleton finished 16th (1:39.04).
Hodgson also earned a school record and fourth-place finish in the 100 back. His time of 47.82 was also a NCAA provisional time.
“Andy is such a gamer and he had a really tough double,” Harper said. “The 200 free and 100 back is a tough double and he just missed getting third in both. I really saw his heart to day, it’s all Garnet and Gold and I’m really proud of him.”
In the 400 medley relay the Seminole team of Hodgson, Thacker, Botha and Denton shattered the school record in a NCAA provisional time of 3:08.89 to take second. Hodgson once again broke his school record in the 100 back leading-off with a 47.41.
“For [Andy] to come through and go faster in the relay when we needed it most was great,” Harper said. “Scott, Jarryd and Ed were great. I knew we needed to be a low 3:10 to make NCAA’s and to go 3:08 was tremendous.”
Florida State will begin the final day of the ACC Championships on Saturday morning at 11:00 a.m., with preliminary heats of the 200 back, 100 free, 200 breast and 200 fly. Live stats and live streaming video on ACC Select beginning at 7:00 p.m., are available at www.seminoles.com.