Feb. 19, 2016
COLUMBIA, Mo. -- Two more program records fell on Friday night as the University of South Carolina Swimming & Diving program wrapped up the fourth day of the 2016 SEC Championships. Carolina's men hold the seventh position with one day remaining, at 432 points, and the Gamecock women are in 11th, with 324.5 points.
Florida continues to lead the men's meet with 982 points through four days. The Gamecocks are in a tight race for the seventh spot as LSU, Texas A&M and Kentucky are all close behind, at 418.
The women's team competition is led by Texas A&M after four days, with 847.5 points. The Gamecocks are right behind Arkansas, who has 371 points at the close of Friday's competition.
The Gamecocks broke two program swimming records in the morning, as Paige Maynard swam a time of 1:58.03 in the 200-yard butterfly and Jonathan Boland posted a time of 47.05 to set the 100-yard backstroke mark.
The program bests continued to mount up in the evening, where Marissa DelGado broke Maynard's hours-old 200 fly record with a time of 1:57.81. Overall, Carolina swimmers have combined for six Gamecock bests this week at the Mizzou Aquatic Center.
HEAD SWIMMING COACH McGee Moody - "I thought this morning started us off pretty well. We put a lot of folks back in finals tonight, and we had a lot of good opportunities to get up and race. We had some people break some records this morning, and then we came back tonight and improved on some of those times." -- On his overall outlook of the team's Friday efforts
"We're starting to see the effects of a five-day meet. We've got some people that are really tired, so we're having to spend a lot of time on the massage table and in the ice bath and things like that to try to get them through tomorrow night and the end of the meet." -- On the grueling toll of a five-day meet
"We've done that a lot this weekend. That's a good thing. This morning, I think Jonathan Boland got things started in the 100 backstroke. That was Jay Warner's record from a few years ago. Then Paige Maynard broke the 200 fly record and tonight Marissa DelGado came back and broke Paige's record. We've got a lot of people that are swimming really well, and we want to keep rewriting that record book. That shows improvement and progress, and that's what we want." -- On the way the Gamecocks have continued to break records this week
"We've got some great events tomorrow; it's a very strong day for us, both the men and women. Akaram Mahmoud is one of the top milers in the nation, so the expectation is for him to get out there and try to win that event. Nils Wich-Glasen is in the top-eight in the country in the 200 breaststroke and had a great 100 breaststroke today, so I think he's setting himself up really well for tomorrow. Across the board, we're going to approach it where we come in here in the morning just like we did today and try to be our best in each race that steps up on the block." -- On the expectations for tomorrow's final day
HEAD DIVING COACH Todd Sherritt - "It's his first time ever making all three finals, and the tower today was the icing on the cake for his performance. This whole entire week was great. It's a very difficult final to make, on the platform, and without having the frequency of being on the 10-meter platform. It's just amazing that he got in it. This is the thing we needed to do to go forward to the NCAAs, and I'm looking for some great performances at nationals as well." -- On the efforts of Jordan Gotro to qualify for three diving finals
Two Gamecocks qualified for the C Final of the 200-yard butterfly, and both finished in the top-four of the evening heat. Caleb Tosh came in 19th overall with a time of 1:45.69, and Fynn Minuth was right behind him at 1:45.89. Both Gamecocks set personal bests on Friday.
Boland went out fast in the morning, and his 47.05 in prelims set a three-year-old school record. In the B Final, he took third with a performance of 47.36. The swim was good for 11th overall in the 100 back.
With the breaststroke events beginning on Friday, Nils Wich-Glasen seized the opportunity in his strongest discipline. The sophomore finished fifth in the 100-yard breaststroke, Carolina's best performance of the night, posting a time of 52.83 in the finals. Kevin Leithold also made it to the evening round, where he paced the C Final and placed 17th overall with a swim of 53.63.
Junior Jordan Gotro had never made an SEC Final before this year's conference meet, but he will leave the Mizzou Aquatic Center with three top-eight results under his belt after making it to the evening round of the platform diving competition. Once in finals, Gotro finished eighth with a score of 294.75.
Carolina placed 10th in Friday's finale, the 400-yard medley relay. Boland, Wich-Glasen, Leithold and Tomas Peribonio posted a time of 3:11.88, the third-best mark in program history.
Maynard started the day with a bang, breaking Carolina's 200-yard butterfly record in the fourth heat of the morning with her swim of 1:58.03. She and DelGado made it to the evening, where DelGado broke the record again with a swim of 1:57.81 to win the C Final and place 17th overall. Maynard also had a strong evening swim, posting a 1:58.11 to finish in 11th position.
Senior Ashleigh Ferguson was the top Gamecock in the 100-yard backstroke. The Rockville, Md., native turned in a time of 54.41 on Friday night and came in 20th place. Her 54.37 in prelims was a personal record.
Kersten Dirrane represented South Carolina in the finals of the 100-yard breaststroke. Dirrane's evening swim of 1:02.55 gave her a 23rd-place result.
The Gamecocks came in 11th in the night's final race, the 400-yard medley relay. Ferguson, Emma Barksdale, Heather Merritt and McKenna Keith turned in a time of 3:41.66, the third-best performance in Carolina history.
UP NEXT FOR CAROLINA
The fifth and final day of the SEC Championships begins with prelims at 10 a.m. CT on Saturday, and finals start at approximately 4 p.m. CT. The Gamecocks will finish the meet with the 200-yard backstroke, 100-yard freestyle, 200-yard breaststroke, women's platform dive, 1,650-yard freestyle and 400-yard freestyle relay.
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