UK divers make early impact on first day of competition
COLLEGE STATION, Texas – Junior diver Greg Ferrucci continued his strong season with a runner-up finish on the 1-meter springboard on the first day of competition in the 2013 SEC Swimming and Diving Championships Tuesday night. Ferrucci notched his season-high score in the event with a 389.4, finishing behind Missouri’s David Bonuchi (401.5).
“Great job by Greg tonight,” said UK diving coach Ted Hautau. “He hit his last three dives to close a pretty big gap and made a good run to finish second. He looked relaxed and confident in the finals and I see a lot of improvement in his mental game.”
Tuesday marked the first time since the Tennessee Diving Invitational on Jan. 5 that Ferrucci had fully participated due to a thumb injury that limited him against Louisville and kept him out of the Cincinnati meet.
Also on the men’s side in the 1-meter event, John Fox (307.25), Zack Peterson (277.10), and Corey Cowger (260.55) scored points for Kentucky, each finishing in the top 20.
The SEC women took to the 3-meter boards on Tuesday with two Wildcats scoring in the event. Rebecca Hamperian took 11th place with a 299.35, while Sarah Chewning earned a top-20 finish with a 277.10. No UK women divers advanced to the evening’s Finals.
The lone swimming events of the day were relay competitions. Kentucky’s Will Heidler, Travis Green, John Bullock and Scott Crosthwaite combined for a 10th place finish (6:32.02) in the 800-freestyle relay and the UK men were disqualified for an early takeoff in the 200-medley relay.
Kentucky women also competed in relay events Tuesday. Megan Eppler, Abby Myers, Mandy Myers and Blair Kuethe placed in 10th place in the 800-freestyle relay (7:21.46). Laura Dawson, Sam Shaheen, Christina Bechtel and Mandy Myers also finished in 10th (1:41.02) in the 200-medley relay.
“The only real downside was the jump on the men’s relay,” said head swimming coach Gary Conelly. “Our fourth guy left .02 seconds early. We are going to shake that off and stay focused on the challenge in front of us, not what happened in the past. If we do that, we’ll be fine.”
After one day of action in the SEC Championships, Kentucky women sit in 10th place (91) and the men hold steady in ninth place (95).
The schedule for Wednesday’s action in College Station is as follows:
Wednesday, Feb. 20
500 Free (prelims) — 10 a.m.
200 IM (prelims)
50 Free (prelims)
Diving: Women’s 1-meter (prelims) — 1 p.m.
200 Free Relay (finals)– 6 p.m.
Diving: Women’s 1-meter (finals)
500 Free (Finals)
200 IM (Finals)
50 Free (Finals)