Feb. 22, 2008
Atlanta, Ga.- Senior Lauren Sparg got the Seminoles started off right and Florida State was able to remain in third place with 359.5 points Friday, February 22 at the 2008 ACC Championships. The Seminoles are now only 18.5 points behind second place North Carolina.
“I think everyone in garnet and gold did a great job tonight,” FSU head coach Neil Harper said. “I think coming into the meet a lot of people thought we would be in a battle for third, fourth or fifth. We have one day to go and we have everything to swim for and I think our girls are excited for the opportunity.”
The Durban, South Africa native took home the women’s first individual gold with an NCAA automatic qualifying time of 53.50 in the 100 butterfly. Sparg was joined in the finals by senior Abbie King who finished fourth with a personal best time of 54.73.
FSU freshman C.J. Hendry also score points for the Seminoles finishing 10th (55.22). Both times were NCAA “B” qualifying times. This is the third consecutive year FSU has won the 100 fly.
“I am very happy with my win, it was great going out like that as a senior with a victory in an individual race,” Sparg said. “I would have liked to go a little bit faster, but there is always NCAA’s to do that.”
Florida State turned in two more podium finishes in the 100 breast. Freshman Lowri Tynan turned in a personal best time of 1:02.25 winning a silver medal while her teammate junior Georgia Holderness was right behind her taking third (1:02.43). Junior Kylen Huntwork did her part finishing 13th in the consolation finals (1:05.28).
“When you have a freshman like Lowri Tynan that’s a big move to jump right in and finish second,” Harper said. “I was also excited for Georgia [Holderness] and I’m just proud of those girls. We’ve had a reputation of being a breaststroke school and the team led by example and kept that streak alive.”
In the 200 free freshman Jocelyn Phillips took home fifth place in a time of 1:48.47. The Seminoles also scored points in the consolation final as sophomore Kylsie Grimes won the heat to nab ninth place points and a personal best (1:49.12). Freshman Holly Mills finished in 11th place touching the wall with a time of 1:49.30 and senior Lindsay Kenney touched in 15th position (1:51.22).
The 400 medley relay provided some drama for the Seminoles. The team of Hendry, Tynan, Sparg and King finished fourth one-hundreth of a second behind third-place North Carolina in a NCAA “B” qualifying time of 3:41.51.
FSU had another great showing on the diving board with all four women scoring points for the Seminoles on the three-meter. Sophomore Katie Sirounis was the best Florida State finisher grabbing the number four position scoring 298.55 points. Freshman Kat Adham qualified for her second consecutive final this time finishing eighth (253.55). In the morning prelims sophomore Aleia Monden finished ninth (262.25) and sophomore Mel Cabassol took 15th (226.50).
“I was really excited and our team is young,” FSU diving coach Patrick Jeffrey said. “I thought we did a great job especially putting two girls in the finals.”
The 100 back saw senior Kate Skaggs take home 16th place touching the wall in a time of 57.23.
Florida State will be back in action Saturday, February 23 in the final day of the ACC Championships. The Seminoles will compete in the 1650 free, 200 back, 100 free, 200 breast, 200 fly and 400 freestyle relay. Divers will compete on the platform. You can watch your Seminoles in action every evening by logging on to www.accselect.com at 7:00 p.m. For results visit www.seminoles.com.