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Monday, March 01, 2021

The Gator swimming and diving teams sunk the No. 23 Tigers in a dual meet at Auburn. 

The No.8 women and No.5 men won 215-84 and 158-142, respectively. 

The meet started on a high note for the women. Florida’s A team, made up of freshmen Lain Shahboz and Cecilia Porter and sophomores Talia Bates and Katelyn Mack, pulled first place in the 200-yard medley relay at 1:38.80. The B team ranked third at 1:39.47.

But the success didn’t end there. 

The Gators placed first in 15 of 16 events and were practically competing against themselves during the meet. 

In the 200-yard freestyle, the Gators clutched the top three places. Senior Nikki Miller ranked first at 1:46.42. Just .32 of a second later, freshman Kathleen Golding clocked in at 1:46.74. Senior Taylor Ault took third place with 1:47.59. 

Bates came in at first in the 100-yard backstroke with 52.84. Junior Katherine Minnich trailed just behind with 53.68. The same scenario played out for the 100-yard breaststroke, the 100-yard free, the 200-yard backstroke and the 500-yard free. 

The Gators sat atop first and second place for 7 events and got another A-cut in senior diver Ashley McCool.

However, too much of a good thing can lead to slip ups.

Florida came up short in the 1000-yard free as freshman Elise Bauer finished second with 9:43.00 — more than 2 seconds after the first place swimmer. Overall, the Gators squashed the competition for the day’s total standings.

While the women’s team shot Auburn out the water, the men’s team had tighter hoops to swim through. 

The Gators took first place in nine of 16 events at the meet. 

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Florida’s A team ranked second behind Auburn in the 200-yard medley relay with a frustrating .14 second difference. Auburn went on to defeat the Gators in the 100-yard breaststroke, 200-yard butterfly, 50-yard free, 1-meter dive, 200-yard breaststroke and 500-yard free.

The team drowned at the hands of the Tigers in the 1-meter dive. Second place sophomore Anton Sviraky scored 307.28 — 11 points under Auburn’s first place diver. 

However, the team still isn’t a force to be reckoned with. 

The Gators fully dominated in the 100-yard free. Junior Kieran Smith ranked first with 43.75, sophomore Trey Freeman in second with 44.63 and junior Will Davis in third with 44.68. 

Florida now leads 26-16 against the Tigers in all-time plays for the women’s team and 21-16 for the men’s team.

While the meet wasn’t a clean win across the board, it was a great day for the Gators. They must now hit the practice pools for the competition ahead.

Both teams will compete in the SEC Championships from Feb. 17-26 and NCAA Championships in March.

Contact Faith Buckley at and follow her on Twitter @_faithbuckley

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Faith Buckley

Faith Buckley is a first-year journalism student at UF and The Alligator's swimming and diving beat writer. She is specializing in sports media to one day hopefully work as an NHL commentator.

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