Dec. 3, 2016
THE FLATS – The Georgia Tech swimming and diving program had six swimmers in Iris Wang, Kaitlin Kitchens, Chiara Ruiu, Maddie Paschal, Aidan Pastel and Yuval Safra swim unattached this weekend at the 2016 AT&T Winter National Championships held at the McAuley Aquatic Center in Atlanta, Ga.
Wang picked up a pair of top-six finishes on the weekend. The Tech sophomore posted times of 1:46.26 (prelims) and 1.46.58 (finals) in the women’s 200 free to place sixth overall in the `A’ finals race on Friday. Both are NCAA ‘B’ qualifying times. She then followed up that performance with a fourth-place showing in the women’s 100 free event on Saturday, recording times of 49.25 (prelims) and 49.15 (finals), also both NCAA ‘B’ marks.
Kitchens also competed in two events for the meet, racing in both the women’s 50 free and 100 free events. The first-year Yellow Jacket turned in times of 23.16 (prelims) and 22.98 (finals) in the 50 free on Thursday and then touched the wall in times of 50.36 (prelims) and 50.20 (finals) in the 100 free on Saturday.
Her time of 22.98 in the 50 free ranks as the fourth-best time in Tech history and is an NCAA ‘B’ qualifying time, while her mark of 50.20 in the 100 free is the fifth-best time in Tech history. Both were Tech career-best marks for the junior transfer.
Ruiu, the redshirt-senior co-captain, competed in three events on the weekend in the women’s 200 IM, 100 breast and 200 breast events, in which she holds the GT record in all three events. In the 200 IM on Thursday, Ruiu posted identical times of 2:02.05 in both the prelims and the finals. In the 100 breast, she logged times of 1:01.52 (prelims) and 1:01.48 (finals), while in the 200 breast she recorded times of 2:13.96 (prelims) and 2:13.13 (finals), all of which are NCAA ‘B’ standard times.
Pastel, a GT freshman, registered times of 20.79 (prelims) and 20.77 (finals) in the men’s 50 free event on Thursday, his lone event for the championship meet. On Friday, Paschal turned in a time of 55.41 in the prelims of the women’s 100 back, just missing out on the finals.
Safra, whose eligibility for the Yellow Jackets ended last year, turned in a time of 4:36.78 in the 500 men’s free prelims event on Thursday morning. He then returned to the pool on Saturday where he touched the wall in times of 1:45.70 (prelims) and 1:47.26 (finals) in the 200 men’s back to place eighth overall in the `A’ Finals.
The Yellow Jackets will return to dual meet competition on Monday, Dec. 19, when they will face off with both Cincinnati and Florida Atlantic in a double dual meet in Naples, Fla.
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