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Compiled from school press releases
Published January 26, 2008
The No. 1 Florida (2-1, 1-1 SEC) gymnastics team claimed a come-from-behind win over No. 17 Auburn (0-3, 0-3 SEC) Friday evening in front of a Beard-Eaves Memorial Coliseum crowd of 1,653. The Gators turned in a 195.25, while the Tigers posted a 194.75. The difference was the fourth consecutive time the Florida at Auburn dual meet margin of victory was 0.50 or less.
The Gators trailed the Tigers by more than six-tenths after the opening rotation and chipped away at the lead, taking a narrow 0.05 lead into the final rotation. A six-for-six balance beam set gave the Gators the meet's top six spots on the event and sealed the narrow win for Florida. The UF coaching staff reminded the team of last week's slender 0.025 loss to No. 2 Georgia and that the team needed to fight for every tenth.
"I was pleased with how we hung tough for balance beam," UF Head Coach Rhonda Faehn said. "They didn't give up. That is something we talked about - fighting for every tenth because it is never over until it's over. I felt they did fight for every bit on beam and I'm proud of that. We will gain experience from it. It is a young team as far as depth goes and they just need to learn from it."
Florida had its problems in the meet. For the second consecutive week, the Gators were forced to count a fall toward its team total. Prior to the Jan. 18 Florida versus Georgia competition, UF had gone 28 meets without counting a fall toward its team total. This time Florida's opening two floor exercise performers registered a fall during a tumbling pass and the team could only manage of 48.30 on the event.
Bars didn't start the meet off well for the Gators. One Gator fell and another caught her leg on her second release move, causing a sizable deduction that was kept Florida's score down to 48.475. Florida was led on the event by seniors Nicola Willis and Ashley Reed, as each turned in marks of 9.775 to share second overall. Auburn's A.J. Mills posted the high bars mark of the evening at 9.85.
The Gators shook off their slow start to use marks of 9.85 or above to post a team total of 49.35 on vault. Willis shared the meet title on the event with AU's Lindsey Puckett at 9.90. The mark ups Willis' collegiate-best from 9.85 last set in Florida 2008 season opener on Jan. 11. Reed and sophomore Courtney Gladys shared third at 9.875. Friday's performance marked the second consecutive week Gladys earned her vault collegiate-best mark.
Sophomore Amanda Castillo claimed at least a share of two event titles Friday. The Gator beam sweep was led by Castillo, who picked up her first beam title of the season by matching her season-best of 9.875. Reed and Corey Hartung shared second on the event at 9.85. Castillo shared the evening's floor exercise title with AU's Puckett at 9.85. Hartung finished third at 9.80.
For the third consecutive meet, a different Gator picked up the all-around win. Tonight, the title went to Reed, who posted a 39.275 to claim her ninth collegiate win.
Tonight's meet will air tape-delayed Feb. 10 at 6 p.m. on COX Sports (Cox Cable channel 67 in Gainesville/Ocala)and also airs tape-delayed Jan. 29 at 7 p.m. on CSS.
Next week, the Gators return home to play host to No. 10 Arkansas on Friday, Feb. 1 at 7 p.m. for Dodge and WGFL-CBS 4 Night. The first 500 fans, 12 and under, will receive a t-shirt courtesy of Dodge. U.S. National Team member Alicia Sacramone will be on hand to sign autographs for fans from 5:30 p.m. - 6:45 p.m.
Florida State swimming and diving made a long day of traveling pay off by sweeping South Carolina Friday evening January 25, in Columbia, S.C. The No. 25 ranked men won 169-131 while the No. 20 ranked women took home a 171.5-128.5 victory.
"I'm really thrilled with the outcome, I wasn't sure what to expect from our team going on the road," FSU head coach Neil Harper said. "South Carolina is a good team and we really swam well as a team. This was a total team effort."
The meet started great for the men and the women with the Seminoles taking the top two spots in the 200 medley relay on both sides. On the men's side it was the team of senior Ian Powell, sophomores Scott Thacker and Corey Swanson and junior Scott Baker winning in a time of 1:32.00. On the women's side it was freshmen C.J. Hendry, Lowri Tynan and seniors Lauren Sparg and Abbie King touching in 1:45.77.
Individually it was Baker once again sweeping the 50 and 100 freestyle events. The Lake Mary, Fla. native finished with times of 20.30 and 45.81 respectively. Freshman Matt Shead and Thacker helped lead Florida State to 1-2-3 finishes in both breaststroke events. Shead won the 100 breast (56.39) while Thacker took home the 200 touching in at 2:04.86. Freshman Ian Rowe and sophomore Nick Graves each took home a distance event. Rowe won the 1000 freestyle in a time of 9:35.02 with the Seminoles finishing 1-2-3 once again while Graves was victorious in the 500 (4:38.13). Rounding out the winners on the men's side Powell took home a victory in the 100 backstroke (51.43).
On the women's side, sophomore Stevi Steinhauer also swept the sprint events with two season-best times. In the 50 free Steinhauer touched in 23.62 and in the 100 free she won with a time of 51.41. Junior Georgia Holderness added a sweep of her own in the breaststroke events. She won the 100 (1:04.17) and 200 (2:16.76) breast helping the Seminoles take a commanding lead. Another Seminole was not to be outdone as Hendry added yet another sweep winning the 100 backstroke (57.75) and 200 back (2:02.69). FSU was able to finish 1-2-3 in both events.
"We had some great individual swims from Stevi [Steinhauer], Scott [Baker] and Georgia [Holderness] as well as many others," said Harper. "We were able to sweep some events starting with the 200 medley and that was really big for us."
Florida State is back in the pool Saturday morning as they visit ACC foe Clemson. The dual with the Tigers will be featured on ACCSelect.com at 11:00 a.m. The quick turnaround is a challenge for FSU, but it's one they will not back down from.
"It certainly isn't an ideal situation, but we don't want to be put in ideal situations right now," Harper said. "We want to go out there and fight and do whatever it takes for us to come out on top."