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Twelve Golds Drive Tech to Split with South Carolina

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THE FLATS – Georgia Tech swimming and diving split to open their two-meet homestand as the men’s team won a thriller over South Carolina and the women fell in their meet at the McAuley Aquatic Center on Saturday afternoon.

The 20th-ranked men’s team edged out the Gamecocks 153-147, while the women suffered a 193-107 setback.

“Really proud of the energy that the team brought today,” head coach Courtney Shealy Hart said. “Our eyes are still set on championships season so for us to swim faster than we did against Auburn a few weeks ago, that shows we’re going in the right direction. We’ve still got some work to do, but we’re doing the right things. Overall, I’m proud of the men’s team for their fight today to get the win and proud of the women for battling the entire meet without let-up.”

The Jackets will conclude the homestand when they host Denver on Jan. 25-26. Tech will hold their Faculty Appreciation Day on Friday, Jan. 25 for the 3 p.m. start, while Saturday will feature Senior Day festivities prior to the 11 a.m. start.

Men’s Highlights

Needing a win and another top-3 finish to win the meet, it all came down to the final relay – the 400 free relay. The Yellow Jackets took advantage of a great first jump and Tech’s squad of Rodrigo Correia, Austin Daniel, Caio Pumputis and Darren Lim won with a time of 2:58.79. GT’s team of Albert Zhi, Clay Hering, Aidan Pastel and Colt Williamson finished third at 3:04.19 to secure the win.

The Yellow Jackets would take both relays on the day, also winning the opening relay – 200 medley relay – as Correia, Zhi, Pumputis and Corben Miles turned in a winning time of 1:28.74. Also finishing atop the podium was freshman Kyle Barone, who swam a tough 49.20 to win the 100 back. Also scoring for Tech in the event was Williamson (third – 50.43) and Daniel (fifth – 51.74).

Tech then nabbed two dominant 1-2-3 finishes. First in the 200 fly, when Tim Slanschek (1:48.28) led the group of Hering (1:48.33) and Pumputis (1:48.92) and then second in the 50 free with Miles (20.05), Darren Lim (20.91) and Pastel (20.99).

Freshman Lim fought to another win for Georgia Tech in the 100 free. Lim battled to a 45.68 finish before Zhi and Daniel tied for third (45.93). Then in the 100 fly, the Jackets got a big lift in the 100 fly as Pumputis, Hering and Slanschek finished 1-2-3 at 48.96, 49.76 and 49.92, respectively.

Senior Correia and Zhi also medaled in the 200 free, as Correia turned in a second-place time of 1:39.16 and Zhi finished third at 1:40.44. Correia also finished second in the 200 back, just ahead of Williamson, who finished third (1:48.66) and Barone, who finished fifth (1:51.64).

For diving, in the 3-meter, Jacob Kreider led Tech with a final score of 344.78, just ahead of Matt Casillas (334.35) and Henry Carman (325.80). Then in the 1-meter, Casillas finished second with a final score of 342.38 before Kreider, who placed fourth with his 290.93 points.

Freshman Cale Russell led a group of Jackets to a 3-4-5 finish in the 1000 free, swimming a 9:31.17. Behind Russell, Brennan Day (9:34.32) and Clark Wakeland (9:40.82) finished fourth and fifth, respectively. Tech would then secure another 3-4-5 grouping in the 100 breast as Jonathan Yang (57.16), Joseph Portillo (57.83) and Tanner Doan (57.85) scored six combined points.

Finishing out the day in individual events was Slanschek in the 200 IM. Slanschek led Tech with a third-place finish of 1:52.14, before Doan touched the pad at 1:53.93 for fifth. Joonas Koski finished fourth in the 500 free with a time of 3:36.95

Women’s Highlights

Tech’s highlight of the day came on the diving boards where Camryn Hidalgo swept the 3-meter and 1-meter events in an impressive showing. In the 3-meter, Hidalgo recorded a final score of 341.33 before tallying a 1-meter total of 298.73. Caroline Doi also scored an even 300.00 for fourth in the 3-meter before finishing fifth in the 1-meter with 252.83 points.

Also winning her event in the pool was senior Iris Wang, who turned in a time of 1:50.14 to win the 200 free. Kristen Hepler also scored in the event with a career-best performance, finishing fifth (1:53.57). Wang then finished second in the 100 free, getting edged out by .03 seconds on a 50.74 finish. Right behind her in the event was Celine Nugent, who finished fourth with a 52.29

Hepler then won the 200 breast by more than a second, swimming a 2:18.30. Williams also scored in the 200 breast, finishing fourth with a time of 2:21.89. Getting Tech’s third win of the day was junior Emily Ilgenfritz in the 500 free, who touched the pad first with a time of 4:55.98. Also finishing well in the race was freshman Morgan Johnson (fourth – 5:00.86).

Ilgenfritz then led a strong trio of Jackets in the 1000 free. Ilgenfritz finished second with a time of 10:11.53 before Johnson (10:20.91) and Lindsay Wallace (10:28.11) finished fourth and fifth, respectively. Ilgenfritz then finished third in the 200 fly, swimming a 2:04.37 to finish just ahead of Miller (fifth – 2:05.94).

Tech swimming opened the day in the 200 medley relay with a second-place finish by the squad of Allie Paschal, Nicole Williams, Chloe Miller and Wang. Then in the 100 back, senior Sara Gilbert finished second by swimming a 57.32 before Grace Mauldin scored from fourth (57.62).

Then in the 100 breast, freshman Williams kicked hard to a second-place finish, just ahead of Catriona MacGregor’s fourth-place 1:05.43. Paschal then swam a 2:01.78 time to finish second in the 200 back. Right behind her was Jami Williams (2:05.90) and Mauldin (2:06.99), who placed fourth and fifth, respectively. MacGregor also then finished third in the 200 IM, swimming a 2:05.50.

Paschal and MacGregor then finished fourth and fifth, respectively, in the 50 free as Paschal swam a 24.20 and MacGregor swam a 24.24. Miller then finished fourth in the 100 fly with a time of 57.29.

Tech Tidbits

* Junior Kristen Hepler swam a career-best time in the women’s 200 free, turning in a 1:53.57.
* Sophomore Aidan Brook turned in a personal-best time of 9:58.79 in the men’s 1000 free.
* Freshman Gabe Munoz swam a season-best time of 50.61 in the men’s 100 fly.
* Sophomore Caio Pumputis finished with a career-best in the men’s 200 fly with a time of 1:48.92.
* Sophomore Leon Warnakulasuriya broke his personal men’s 50 back record by splitting 24.57.

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