TALLAHASSEE, Fl. – In a thrilling season opening battle, Georgia Tech swimming & diving used 21 gold medals across 32 events to split on the road against Florida State in Tallahassee, Fl., on Friday afternoon.
Tech’s women left The Sunshine State with their first win of the year, topping the Seminoles 176-124. On the men’s end of things the Jackets lost 152-147. Combined the Yellow Jackets beat FSU with a score of 323-276.
This was just the second win for the Georgia Tech women against FSU in 17 all-time matchups. Their last victory came in 2014 when the Jackets beat the Seminoles by just four points.
“We are grateful that our teams had the opportunity to compete today,” said Toni M. and Richard L. Bergmark Swimming & Diving head coach Courtney Shealy Hart. “Our team has been working hard and It was great to see them against FSU today. FSU has a great team so a dual meet with them is always fun.”
The Yellow Jacket women started the meet off fast as they took first with a time of 1:44.28 in the 200 Medley Relay, with juniors Allie Paschal, Nicole Williams, Emily Graham and sophomore McKenzie Campbell leading the way.
Sophomore transfer Duda Seifer opened the day for Tech with a first-place finish in the 1000 Free, clocking in at 10:12.01. She would follow that performance up with another first-place finish in the 500 Free, swimming to a 4:57.11 finish, just milliseconds ahead of second-place finisher Phoebe Griffiths (4:57.12) of FSU.
Tech was able to sweep the top-three in two separate events, winning the Women’s 100 & 200 Breast events. The 100 Breast squad trio saw senior Catriona MacGregor (1st, 1:04.29), Williams (2nd, 1:04.75) & true freshman Claudia Butterfield (3rd, 1:04.90) earn the Jackets their first event sweep of the day. Butterfield (2nd, 2:20.36) and Williams (3rd, 2:21.65) joined senior Julia Shuford (1st, 2:20.07) in the top-three in the 200 Breast.
Senior Caio Pumputis had a solid day taking Gold in three separate events. He was the first Yellow Jacket men’s swimmer to put first-place points on the board in the Men’s 200 Free (1:37.32). Later in the meet he would post a 1:56.70 mark in the Men’s 200 Breast, finishing in first nearly eight full seconds ahead of FSU’s second-place finisher Izaak Bastian (2:04.23). Pumputis earned his third first-place finish of the day in the 200 IM, coming in at 1:48.92.
Fellow senior Christian Ferraro also captured Gold in three events, as he placed first in the Men’s 200 Fly (1:46.41), 100 Free (45.02) and 100 Fly (47.74). Both seniors teamed up with freshman Grant Allison and sophomore Darren Lim to take first in the 400 Free Relay (2:58.69), shrinking FSU’s margin of victory to just five points.
Pumputis’s 200 Breast and Ferraro’s 200 Fly times were both fast enough to earn a B Standard for NCAA’s this year.
The diving squad took the top-two spots in both the men’s & women’s 3m competition, with sophomore’s Carmen Woodruff (266.63) & Ruben Lechuga (328.58) each taking first. It was a close fight on the women’s end of the 3m contest as fellow true freshman Anna Bradescu placed second at 263.25 points. Senior Jacob Kreider (286.95) was the second-place diver in that event on the men’s side.
“I am so happy for our ladies,” Shealy Hart added. “Our women winning is a huge stepping stone for us and our long-term goals. Our men fought hard and it came down to the last two few events. We are looking forward to getting everyone back and competing at the UGA Invite in two weeks.”
True freshman Rei Kuramoto shined in her collegiate debut taking first in the 200 Free at 1:51.56. Seifer would join her in the top-three in that event as she placed third (1:53.65). The Women’s 100 Fly saw Kuramoto earning another first-place finish as she won in 56.59.
MacGregor followed up her first-place performance in the 100 Breast with another victory in the 200 IM, touching the wall at 2:04.77. Campbell was right behind her taking second at 2:06.54.
Paschal was another member of the women’s 200 Medley Relay squad that saw similar successful results later on in the meet. She would take first in the both the 100 Back (55.48) & 200 Back (1:59.83).
Woodruff (249.83) and Bradescu (239.55) competed well in the 1m diving competition taking second- and third-place, respectively, to go along with their top-two performance in the 3m.
Sophomore Josh Cohen’s time of 4:31.40 in the 500 Free earned him first-place, with teammate and fellow sophomore Dylan Scott coming in second at 4:32.27. Cohen also joined Pumputis in the top-three in the 200 Free placing third with a mark of 1:39.56.
Lechuga was also the second-place diver in the 1m competition, scoring 319.20 falling just short of first (FSU, Joshua Davidson, 325.50).
“I feel like overall we all did a really good job. I really liked my times in all four of my events. We had a lot of personal bests this season. We are looking forward to improving on the little details and resting up for the UGA Invite.” – CAIO PUMPUTIS, SENIOR
“We have been training really hard. We crushed it today. It was a beautiful day to swim and we all did good. The women did an awesome job, I loved the energy. The men did a good job as well, I am proud of everybody. We are ready to go for the next one against UGA in two weeks.” – DUDA SEIFER, SOPHOMORE
Tech will return to the pool on Nov. 18-20 as the Jackets renew Clean, Old-Fashioned Hate against Georgia in Athens at the UGA Invite. The UGA Invite will serve as the Yellow Jackets final meet of the 2020 fall season.
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