The Florida women’s swimming and diving team began the first day of the NCAA Championships in Columbus, Ohio, on Wednesday, finishing 22nd in the 800-yard freestyle relay.
Sophomores Kelsey Dambacher and Kelly Fertel, along with freshman Taylor Ault and senior Amelia Maughan combined to finish the race in 7:05.10.
Ault, swimming in her first NCAAs, had the fastest time in the relay race for UF when she swam her split in 1:45.81. Fertel was the second fastest with a time of 1:46.26.
The Gators have a full schedule of events on Thursday, with all nine of their participants competing in the action. Ault and sophomore Savanna Faulconer start the day with the 500-yard freestyle. They are followed by Fertel along with juniors Hannah Burns and Sydney Sell in the 200-yard IM.
Head Coach Gregg Troy is hoping for better performances in the individual events after the team’s lackluster start on Wednesday.
“Not exactly the way we wanted to start out tonight,” Troy said. “We have to get a better leadoff on the relays because so far, we have been swimming from behind. Hopefully we will come back tomorrow and get it started."
The Gators begin at 10 a.m. on Thursday and have a full schedule of events through Saturday.
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Sydney Sell and three of her teammates will compete in the 200-yard IM on Thursday