Competition Continues at Georgia Invitational
ATHENS, Ga. – The Virginia men’s and women’s swimming teams continued competition with day two of the Georgia Invitational Saturday in Athens, Ga.
Both Virginia squads stand in fifth place with one day remaining. The 18th-ranked Cavalier women have totaled 358 points, while the No. 21 Virginia men have 284 points among the elite field. Top-ranked Georgia (715) leads the women’s field while No. 5 Auburn currently paces the men’s teams (611).
“The first years are continuing to learn and getting a feel for what it’s going to be like at the most intense time of the year, which is February and March,” Virginia head coach Mark Bernardino said. “I found a lot to be happy with out there today. We have a lot of people who are really stepping up and putting forth outstanding efforts. We have others who are working on their skills and trying to find a way to enhance their abilities and swim fast.”
Jack Murfee, Taylor Grey, Peter Geissinger and Tom Barrett teamed up to take sixth in the 200 medley relay, touching in a ‘B’ time of 1:28.97. The team of Matt Murray, Tom Casey, Jacob Pearce and Ivan Capan placed 10th overall in 1:30.71.
Sophomore Bradley Phillips was one of Virginia’s top individual finishers after he took third in the 400 individual medley with a ‘B’ mark of 3:52.56. Classmate Jan Daniec finished sixth in the event with a time of 3:55.54. Freshman David Ingraham (3:53.86, ‘B’) and junior Nick Montes de Oca (3:55.45) swam in the consolation finals and placed 12th and 13th, respectively.
Geissinger took eighth in the 100 butterfly in 49.46 while Murray was 14th overall in 49.71.
Karasek also had a third-place showing with his performance in the 200 freestyle. He finished in a NCAA ‘B’ time of 1:36.77 in the final heat. Sophomore Parker Camp recorded a sixth-place performance in 1:38.30 while Tom Barrett was 10th overall in 1:38.54.
“We have had a lot of downs this season but when we came here everyone got excited about racing in this meet,” Karasek said. “You see a lot of smiles on people’s faces and people are having fun. With the fun comes fast times and a lot of people are stepping up. Overall it has been positive and we have to keep the ball rolling.”
Grey was seventh in the 100 breaststroke, clocking a ‘B’ mark of 55.50 while Casey placed 12th out of the consolation final in 56.84.
The Cavaliers had four finishers among the top 16 in the 100 backstroke with Murfee leading the way in eighth with a mark of 49.52. Murray (49.39) finished 12th, Kyle Dudzinski took 14th (49.55) and Camp placed 16th (50.69).
Phillips, Karasek, Nathan Vredeveld and Jonathan Buerger took fifth in the 800 freestyle relay with a NCAA ‘B’ time of 6:34.27. Geissinger, Camp, Barrett and Ingraham also earned a ‘B’ cut with an eighth-place finish in 6:37.55.
The women’s 200 medley relay team of Charlotte Clarke, Erika Stewart, Meredith Cavalier and Lauren Perdue finished in fifth place with a NCAA ‘B’ time of 1:40.13. Emily Dicus, Christine Olson, Ellen Williamson and Emily Lloyd also notched a ‘B’ cut with their 10th-place finish in 1:42.49.
Olson led a quartet of Cavaliers in the consolation finals of the 400 individual medley. Olson clocked a ‘B’ time of 4:16.86 to place 11th overall. Megan Fox (4:18.04, ‘B’), Alison Haulsee (4:19.70) and Hillary Petersen (4:20.18) were 13th, 14th and 16th, respectively.
Williamson tallied the top individual finish for the Cavalier women after placing fourth in the 100 butterfly in a ‘B’ cut of 53.81. Teammates Emily Dicus (54.55, ‘B’) and Sarah White (55.09) both swam in the consolation finals with Dicus taking 11th and White 14th.
Both Perdue and Naurath had solid showings in the consolation final of the 200 freestyle, clocking NCAA ‘B’ standards. Perdue was 11th in 1:46.59 and Naurath was 12th in 1:46.85.
Olson represented UVa in the 100 breaststroke and finished 13th with a ‘B’ time of 1:02.76.
Cavalier (53.19) and Clarke (53.33) swam in the 100 backstroke final and placed sixth and seventh, respectively. Two more Cavaliers competed in the consolation final as Williamson was 13th (54.13) and Stewart was 14th (54.63). All four times were NCAA ‘B’ marks.
The women’s 800 freestyle relay team of Dicus, Perdue, Naurath and Kenney combined for a fourth-place effort with a ‘B’ time of 7:09. Haulsee, Meredith Perdue, Kelly Offutt and Stewart also clocked a ‘B’ standard with an 11th-place finish in 7:21.76.
“Through four sessions, we are hanging tough against some great athletes and great programs,” Bernardino said. “Hopefully we can finish tomorrow with a successful day. It obviously gets more difficult and more challenging as you go on in this meet. We are also placing every athlete in one or two more events than they’ll see at the conference meet because we want them to learn how to battle through fatigue at a higher level.”
The third and final day of the Georgia Invitational is set for Sunday with preliminaries in the 200 backstroke, 100 freestyle, 200 breaststroke, 200 butterfly and 1650 freestyle. The morning session begins at 9:30 a.m. with finals at 3 p.m.