The Florida State swimming and diving teams opened up the 2018-19 season by securing three victories over ACC foes at the Morcom Aquatics Center on Saturday. The women swept competition, defeating Pittsburgh (197-102) and Georgia Tech (189-110). The men split their meet, defeating the Panthers (176-123) and falling to Georgia Tech (141-158).
“We had a great day,” FSU head coach Neal Studd said. “We got out of here 3-1. The girls dominated the meet with some great swims across the board and from some of our new girls from our highly ranked recruiting class this year. The ladies on the boards did amazing.”
The women were in control throughout the morning, winning 10 of 16 events against the Yellow Jackets and eight of 16 against the Panthers.
FSU started off with a victory in the 200 medley relay behind sophomore Madeline Cohen, freshman Ida Hulkko, senior Leila Johnston and sophomore Emma Terebo with a time of 1:40.99.
Hulkko carried her success over to the 100 breast, winning the event in her first collegiate swim meet. Her time of 1:01.19 places her as the seventh fastest time in school history.
The Noles posted a key sweep in the women 50 freestyle, proving to be the only time any team during the meet swept an event. Freshman Kertu Alnek earned the victory with a time of 23.70 over Terebo. (23.74). Sophomore Elise Olsen finished third in the event with a time of 23.84.
Olsen also secured a victory of her own Saturday morning. The sophomore won the 100 fly, posting a time of 55.43.
Senior Natalie Purnell took home a victory in the 200 breast, finishing with a time of 2:16.98. Hulkko followed in third with a time of 2:19.78.
“Ida was sick all week,” Studd said “She came back and won the 100 breast and turned in a good 200 breast. That’s right up there with one of the top performances in the country this year.”
On the boards, the women cruised past both GT and Pitt. Winning both the 3-meter and 1-meter, the Noles placed three of the top four in each event. Junior diver Molly Carlson swept the competition, taking home first place in both events with a score of 321.60 in the 3-meter and 299.85 in the 1-meter.
Freshman Grace Cable and Junior Ayla Bonniwell also added key contribution finishing third and fourth respectively in both diving events. Cable posted a score of 283.65 on 3-meter and 278.95 on 1-meter while Bonniwell posted a score of 283.15 on 3-meter and 273.30 on 1-meter.
The women capped of a dominating Saturday morning in winning the final event of the day, the 400 free relay. Terebo, Alnek, junior Nika Blank and Johnston posted a time of 3:24.69.
“I’m excited where we’re at,” Studd added. “I think we are faster than maybe we should be, so that’s exciting. Just looking forward to next week.”
The men secured the victory over the Panthers behind seven event wins. While falling to the Yellow Jackets, promise was shown as the Noles took home four events. Overall, the Noles won four events, two in the pool and both diving events.
Senior Kanoa Kaleoaloha was dominant in the pool, winning the 50 free with a time of 20.09 and the 100 free with a time of 44.80. Kaleoaloha also put together a solid outing in the 100 butterfly, posting a time of 48.01, finishing second.
The men finished the day strong, finishing second and third in the 400 free relay. The team of junior Griffin Alaniz, senior Will Pisani, freshman Max McCuster and senior John Vann combined for a time of 2:59.60.
“We just fell a little bit short at the end there against Georgia Tech,” Studd said. “We tried to go 1-2 in the last relay to pull the meet out against Georgia Tech and we went 2-3. We had to try something, like going for two in football to win the game, but proud of our guys today.”
The divers controlled the competition as the Seminoles provided a one-two punch on 3-meter, led by sophomore Joshua Davidson with a score of 356.55, just ahead of junior Cameron Thatcher, who was second (354.30). Junior diver Aidan Faminoff won the 1-meter with a score of 311.65.
The Seminoles hit the road next weekend for an ACC matchup between the Virginia Tech Hokies and the Duke Blue Devils in Christiansburg, Va. For more information, visit FSU Swimming and Diving on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.