November 5, 2016 - by
FSU Downs FGCU, West Florida and Florida Southern


FORT MYERS, Fla.  – The Florida State swimming and diving teams picked up four wins after defeating FGCU, Florida Southern and West Florida at the quad meet at the FGCU Aquatic Center on Saturday.

The women outscored the Eagles by 54 points in the second session after being tied after 10 events on Friday to capture the win, 203.5-149.5. It was the first win over FGCU since the 2013-14 season. The Seminoles also defeated West Florida (258-95) and Florida Southern (290-57), moving to 3-1 on the season.

“It was a great team win,” FSU head coach Neal Studd said. “Our ladies really stepped up and everyone supported each other and most importantly we had fun. I am incredibly proud of what we have achieved in such a short time.”

Florida State came out of the gates blazing and never let up, first posting a dominating victory in the 400 medley relay behind the team of juniors Ariel Barber, Natalie Pierce, Tayla Lovemore and Brenna Ruth with a time of 3:43.03.

Senior Lydia Ware continued to make her presence known by taking second in the 200 IM with a time of 2:03.95. The Seminoles followed with a one-two showing in the 1000 free as junior Alex Wittman cruised to victory with a time of 10:07.54, while senior Katy Stringfield placed second with a mark of 10:14.95.

Lovemore picked up her first individual win during her debut in the 100 fly, touching with a time of 54.78 while Ware finished third (55.71).

In her third race of the day, Ware held off Hannah Burdge of FGCU for the win in the 100 free, touching with a time of 50.65.

“Lydia was huge for us today,” Studd said. “She was our iron lady.”

Florida State posted second place finishes in the next two races as Barber was the runner up in the 100 back (56.67) and Pierce (1:02.65) and junior Christina Loh (1:02.87) finished second and third respectively in the 100 breast.

In diving, the Seminoles added a one-two punch on 3-meter as freshman Ayla Bonniwell led the charge, scoring a 301.95, followed by her classmate, Molly Carlson in second (295.60).

FSU closed out the meet with a second place showing in the 200 free relay with Lovemore, freshman Nika Blank, sophomore Leila Johnston and junior Alexi Smith clocking 1:32.53.

The men’s team moved to 1-1 after a hefty 258-90 win over Florida Southern.

“Our guys had some great swims today,” Studd said. “They looked great in the water and really stepped up and supported the ladies. It was a tremendous team environment.”

The Seminoles won seven of the eight events competed on Saturday, including a trio of sweeps.

Florida State placed first and second in the 400 medley relay to start the day, touching with a time of 3:17.24 behind junior Connor Kalisz, seniors Jason Coombs, Stefan Stojmenovic and Jason McCormick.  Freshman Griffin Alaniz, junior Matt Ankerholz, sophomore Will Pisani and junior Joe Plechy followed with a mark of 3:23.56.

Kalisz went back to work in the 200 IM, winning with a time of 1:54.85 and junior Calvin Bryant followed with a win in the 1000 free, posting a time of 9:27.85, which was 24 seconds faster than the next competitor.

The Seminoles showed their strength in the 100 free, sweeping the event with McCormick leading at 44.68. Sophomores Emir Muratovic was second (45.04) and Kanoa Kaleoaloha (46.05) placed third just ahead of Kalisz, who was fourth (46.19).

Coombs picked up his first individual win of his senior season, touching with a time of 55.66 in the 100 breast, just ahead of Ankerholz who finished with a mark of 55.96 in second place.

FSU closed out the meet winning the 200 free relay with a time of 1:20.82 behind junior Chad Mylin, McCormick, Muratovic and Kaleoaloha.

The diving team will compete at the IUPUI Diving Invite from Nov. 18-20 in Indianapolis, Ind. The Seminoles will then gear up for their mid-season meet, the Georgia Invite which runs from Dec. 2-4 in Athens, Ga.

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