Impressive performances highlight Tennessee’s encounter against North Carolina State

KNOXVILLE, TN – Tennessee swimming and diving put up several impressive performances throughout its two-day meet against NC State on Friday and Saturday at the Allan Jones Intercollegiate Aquatic Center.

NC State won both sides of the encounter. The 13th-ranked Vols fought back in a 198-155 loss to the No. 4 Wolfpack, winning five of the last nine events with a pair of wins, while the No. 7 Lady Vols fell short 207.5-140 .5 against fourth-ranked NC State.

On the men’s side, Tennessee put up strong performances in the free sprints. jordan crooks won the 50 freestyle, matching his season best time of 19.36, while Mistletoe Caribe won the 100 free with a score of 43.36.

Crooks and Caribe were also the first two stops in forming the top 400 freestyle stints with Bjorn Kammann and Alexei Tarasenko, posting the fastest mark of the race at 2:53.38. Crooks’ 100 split of 42.72 marked the second fastest time in the country this season.

To complete the freestyle races, Joaquin Vargas won the 500 m freestyle with a time of 4:22.69 and placed second in the 200 m freestyle, touching the wall in 1:37.17.

Bryden Hattie swept the springboards over the weekend, winning the 1 meter with a record score of 404.55 and winning the 3 meter with a personal best 424.65. His 1 meter was good for sixth all-time in Tennessee history, while his 3 meter performance ranked ninth in the program record books.

“Honestly, Bryden has improved a lot over the past few years,” the dive coach said. Dave Parrington said. “He made great progress this summer with Team Canada, but it also built on what we had worked on before. He dives at a very high level and he leaves this week to participate in the World Cup in Germany. I couldn’t be happier. He behaves like a pro, and it’s starting to pay off. The real test is when we come to the league season.

Complete the sweep at 3 meters, Matthew Wade finished second (393.75) and Peter Nick finished third (359.55). Jacob Resorwho finished third (326.25) on 1 meter, took fourth on 3 meters (348.30) to give the Vols the top four spots in the event.

Jarel Dillard won the 200 breaststroke with 1:56.56, the fifth fastest time in the country entering the competition. Lyubomir Epitropov followed it with a second-place finish (1:57.22). Dillard also won the 100 breaststroke with an impressive 53.22 mark, leading the Vols to a sweep in the event with Michel Houlie (53.62) and Epitropov (55.06) rounding things out.

Landon Dredgers won the 400 IM, clearing the way for the majority of the race. The 2021 NCAA Division II runner-up hit the wall in 3:52.41.

Joel Giraudeau and Martin Espernberg tied in the 200 butterfly for third place with a time of 1:48.57. Harrison Lierz was third in the 200 backstroke, hitting the wall in 1:45.08.

Tennessee finished second in the 400 medley relay, one of the tightest races in the competition. The squad of Harrison Lierz, Dillard, Crooks and Caribe finished with a time of 3:08.51, 0.01 seconds behind the leader. The Crooks team, Caribe, Scott Scanlon and Tarasenko finished second in the 200 freestyle relay behind a mark of 1:18.21. Lierz, Houlie, Crooks and Caribe also finished second in the 200 medley relay (1:26.08).

“I was really pleased with the resilience and balance our men showed throughout the weekend,” the associate head coach said. Rich Murphy said. “Gui had a two day breakout and highlighted a bit of what’s to come. Our stints were outstanding and showed a team that is Tennessee Tough. Excited for Landon and Joaquin for their emergence and wins, and the outstanding performance by the diving team today.”

The Lady Vols did well at 3 meters, with Tanesha Lucoe leading the Lady Vols with a personal best 333.75, the eighth highest in Tennessee history. She also finished third in the 1 meter (262.88). Madison Reese (314.18) also marked a career high in the event, while grace cable (301.28) completed the 3 meter sweep.

“We had quite a few personal bests this game on the women’s side,” Parrington said. “The women were exceptional on Friday and the men were exceptional on both days. We were competitive every day in training, and it shows in the competitions. I was pleased with a lot of what we saw the past two days, and I’m looking forward to what’s to come.”

Opening the game, the team of Josephine Fuller, Mona Mc Sharry, Sara Stotler and Brooklyn Douthwright took first place in the 400m medley relay with a time of 3:38.48. Fuller and McSharry also competed in the 200 medley relay alongside Olivia Harper and Julia Burroughs, as the group took second place behind a mark of 1:39.66. Later in the meet, Douthwright, Burroughs, Stotler and McSharry battled it out in the 400 freestyle relay, setting the second fastest time at 3:22.07.

Kristen Stege notched an impressive victory in the 1000m freestyle with a mark of 9:49.34, almost 20 seconds faster than his previous best time of this season. His performance ranked third in the nation so far this season.

McSharry notched a first-place finish in the 50 freestyle, hitting the wall in 22.63. She also finished second in the 100 breaststroke (1:00.51) and had the second fastest time in the 200 breaststroke with a mark of 2:12.33.

Douthwright finished with the fastest Lady Vols times in the 200 freestyle (1:49.20) and 100 freestyle (50.02), placing second and third respectively. In the 100 butterfly, she tied for third with Stotler (54.47). Stotler also finished third in the 200m butterfly, posting a time of 1:59.54.

In the 200 IM, Fuller battled with NC State’s best swimmer in the event, finishing second (1:59.05) just 0.04 seconds off the fastest time. Regan Rathwell took fourth place in the event with a mark of 2:01.17. In another close race, Rathwell notched a second-place finish in the 200 backstroke (1:55.47), shaving more than three seconds off his best time this season and hitting the wall just 0.01 seconds behind NC State.

Next, Tennessee has a short deadline with a road meet in 10th-ranked Louisville on Thursday, Oct. 20 at 2 p.m. ET.

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