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Monday, May 20, 2024

The UF men's swim team opened up its Southeastern Conference season against LSU on Wednesday, downing the Tigers 166-131 and improving its all-time record against LSU to 19-0.

UF went into the meet after a tough loss to Michigan on Friday, but the Gators were confident they could get their first win against an opponent they've had so much success with in the past.

As the season progresses, UF coach Gregg Troy hopes the men will take every meet as a learning opportunity.

Troy was much happier with his men's performance this week, but he has continued keep the season in proper focus.

"We swam much better this week than last," he said. "It was a great learning point for where we're at."

The men came out swimming early, winning the first four events. The leadership of the team set the tone for the entire match, with juniors Clark Burckle and Omar Pinzon and seniors Rex Tullius and Jos Smith coming in first (1:30.14) in the 200-yard medley relay. They beat out a squad with two of LSU's vaunted "German Trio," Hannes Heyl and Christoph Lubenau, by 0.46 seconds.

On the diving front, the Gators had a less-than-stellar outing, failing to place first in either of the two diving events.

At the end of the meet, LSU closed the point gap between the two teams, taking first through third in the final two events, in which only one swimmer for UF participated.

UF walked away from the meet satisfied to have won first place in 10 of the 16 events and having improved its record this season to an even 1-1.

The women had an extra day of water practice Tuesday and will face off against LSU today. They are also undefeated against LSU and will look to mirror the men's performance when they hit the pool at 3 p.m.

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