“We are on, we are fast and we are dropping some serious time,” FSU head coach Neil Harper said. “Being second is an added bonus and to finish top three in both events and getting two school records it’s a good start.”
The highlight for the Seminoles came in the night’s last event as FSU finished second in the 800 free relay touching the wall in a NCAA “B” qualifying time of 7:13.85. The team of freshman Jocelyn Phillips (Napa, Calif.), junior Georgia Holderness (Butleigh, Somerset, England) and freshmen Holly Mills (Middlesex, Ruislip, England) and Lowri Tynan (Wrexham, Clywd, Wales) beat the old school record set in 2006 by nearly six seconds. Phillips also set a school record in the 200 free with her leadoff split of 1:47.82.
“Breaking the school record by six seconds, I knew we were capable of that,” Harper said. “To do it on the first night gives the team a huge boost.”
“It felt like I was going a moderate speed but apparently I went out with a bang,” said Phillips. “It’s a great feeling to start out a meet that way, now I am just so pumped for the rest of it.”
In the first event of the night, the 200 medley relay the team of freshman C.J. Hendry (Evans, Ga.), Tynan, seniors Lauren Sparg (Durban, South Africa) and Abbie King (Brunswick, Maine) clocked in a NCAA “B” qualifying time of 1:40.99 to take third place. The Seminoles found themselves in the middle of the pack entering the butterfly leg of the relay, but Sparg swam the fastest butterfly split (23.62) to catapult FSU into the top three.
“I think the team is getting really excited,” Harper said. “It’s always good to watch your teammates perform well because now you have every reason to be confident that you can do exactly what the others have done.”
Florida State will be back in the pool Thursday evening beginning at 7:00 p.m. as the Seminoles will compete in the 500 free, 200 individual medley, 50 free and 200 free relay. Diving will also have its first competition as the women compete on the one-meter board. To watch highlights from the Seminoles first day of action log onto www.accselect.com and for meet results visit www.seminoles.com.