March 8, 2007
Minneapolis, Minn. –
For the second consecutive year and the third time in the last four years, Florida State earned Honorable Mention All-American honors in the 400-yard medley relay at the NCAA National Championships held at the University Aquatic Center on the campus of the University of Minnesota. The team of senior Romy Altmann (Cape Town, South Africa), senior Lauren Brick (Culpeper, Va.), junior Lauren Sparg (Durban, South Africa) and sophomore Christie Raleigh (Tom’s River, N.J.) finished second in the “B: final and in 10th place overall. The team shaved over a second off the school and conference record time that they set in the morning session with a mark of 3:36.98.
It was a very fast race for us, said Head Coach Neil Harper. “Romy took it out in a new school record time for the 100 back of 54.39. Lauren (Brick) went 58.68 which is the fastest split in school history. Lauren (Sparg) swam a 53.44 and we were already ahead of our morning time. Christie brought it home faster than she did in the morning with a time of 49.47, a great anchor leg. Just a great performance to get 14 points. It was a great way to end the first day of competition.”
The relay scored the only points for the Seminoles in the Thursday night session. Florida State is in 19th place with 14 points. Arizona leads the meet with 168 points.
In the preliminary round, the team swam a time of 3:38.31 to secure the 10th seed and a trip to the consolation final. In the 2006 championships, the relay team which consisted of Altmann, Brick, Raleigh and current graduate assistant coach Carrie Ellis finished in ninth place with a time of 3:39.01, which were new school and conference records that were bested by this year’s team.
“Our girls went out and swam a new school record in the morning,” added coach Harper. “They bettered the school record that they set earlier in the season and usually that would have been good enough to get in the final, but the competition is so much better this year.”
Two Seminoles competed in the 50-yard freestyle. Two-time defending ACC Champion in the event, Raleigh improved on her finish last year at nationals in the event with a 24th place showing with a time of 22.72. Junior Abbie King (Brunswick, Maine) also improved on her 2006 showing at nationals by placing 52nd with a time of 23.38.
In the 200-yard freestyle relay prelim, the Florida State relay squad of Brick, Raleigh, freshman Kylsie Grimes (Heartland, Wisc.) and King touched the wall in a time of 1:31.66, more than a half second off their fast time of the year which came at the ACC Championships. The Seminoles claimed 19th place, 78 hundredths of a second out of 16th place which would have qualified the team for the “B” final.
Day two of the NCAA Women’s Swimming and Diving National Championships will resume Friday with prelims beginning at 11:00 a.m. and finals at 7:00 p.m central standard time. Tomorrow the Seminoles will compete in the 200 medley relay (Raleigh, Brick, Sparg, King), 100 fly (Raleigh and Sparg), 200 free (Grimes), 100 breast (Brick) and 100 back (Altmann).