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SEC Prelims Day 2: Full Recap

SEC Prelims Day 2: Full Recap

500-Yard Freestyle

SEC Meet Record: 4:34.63 (Brittany MacLean - UGA, 2014)
NCAA 'A' Automatic: 4:36.30
NCAA 'B' Consideration: 4:47.79

​With 2016 SEC champion Brittany MacLean​ of Georgia​ and runner-up ​Hali Flickinger​ also of Georgia out of the picture this year, Texas A&M's ​Sarah Gibson​ (who finished third last year) will look to take the crown. Gibson is the top qualifier out of the preliminary heats with a 4:40.94. Expect some heat from Auburn senior ​Lauren Neidigh​, who finished second in 4:41.36. Neidigh has been tearing it up for the Tigers throughout the dual meet season in the distance races and will be a serious contender tonight in finals.​

Top 8 Finalists

​1.) Sarah Gibson (Texas A&M): 4:40.94​
2.) Ashley Neidigh (Auburn): 4:41.36
3.) Sycerika McMahon (Texas A&M): 4:42.47
4.) Kira Zubar (Mizzou): 4:43.00
5.) Kendal Casey (Kentucky): 4:43.05
6.) Geena Freriks (Kentucky): 4:43.47
7.) Rachel Zilinskas (Georgia): 4:43.72
8.) Ayumi Macias (Arkansas): 4:43.89

SEC Meet Record: 4:10.73 (Dan Wallace - Florida, 2014)
NCAA 'A' Automatic: 4:13.22
NCAA 'B' Consideration: 4:24.99

Florida's ​​Mitch D'Arrigo​ and South Carolina's ​Fynn Minuth​ battled it out the entire way in their preliminary heat to take the top two seeds in 4:12.43 and 4:12.93, respectively. Minuth, a sophomore from Germany, controlled the race until the final 100, where D'Arrigo displayed his signature closing speed to finish in a swift 48.78. D'Arrigo, the 2015 SEC champion and 2016 NCAA runner-up in this event, will look to drop some time tonight and score major points for the Gators in the team race. Akaram Mahmoud ​of South Carolina rounded out the top three with a 4:14.34. Mahmound was second in this event at last year's SECs and fourth at NCAAs. Look for Georgia's ​Jay Litherland​, a 2016 Olympian, to be the wildcard tonight. He swam a 4:17.23 in the outside lane of the first heat and will certainly benefit from more competition tonight. ​

Top 8 Finalists

1.) Mitch D'Arrigo (Florida): 4:12.42 (NCAA 'A')
2.) Fynn Minuth (South Carolina): 4:12.94 (NCAA 'A')
3.) Akaram Mahmoud (South Carolina): 4:14.34
4.) Walker Higgins (Georgia): 4:14.43
5.) Jay Litherland (Georgia) 4:17.23
6.) Ben Lawless (Florida): 4:18.16
7.) Kevin Litherland (Georgia): 4:18.16
8.) Isaac Jones (Kentucky): 4:18.59

200 IM

SEC Meet Record: 1:52.87 (Melanie Margalis - UGA, 2014)
NCAA 'A' Automatic: 1:55.35
NCAA 'B' Consideration: 2:01.59

​How about those Aggies? Texas A&M takes four of the top five spots, putting them in position to rack up some serious points tonight in finals. However, it is the Tennessee Freshman ​Meghan Small​ who finishes first out of the preliminary heats with a quick 1:54.86. She will be flanked on all sides from Aggies ​Sydney Pickrem, Lisa Bratton, Monika Gonzalez-Hermosillo,​ and ​Lisa Bratton. ​Bratton is the defending SEC champion in this event and will look to reclaim her title. The top seed coming into the event, Kentucky Freshman ​Asia Seidt​, finished in sixth this morning and will certainly be a challenger if she can capitalize on her strong front-end speed.

Top 8 Finalists

​1.) Meghan Small (Tennessee): 1:54.86(NCAA 'A')
2.) Sydney Pickrem (Texas A&M): 1:55.23 (NCAA 'A')
3.) Lisa Bratton (Texas A&M) 1:56.23
4.) Monika Gonzales-Hermosillo (Texas A&M): 1:56.60
5.) Bethany Galat (Texas A&M): 1:56.69
6.) Asia Seidt (Kentucky): 1:56.70
7.) Emma Barksdale (South Carolina): 1:56.84
8.) Meaghan Raab (Georgia): 1:57.37


SEC Meet Record: 1:41.76 (Ryan Lochte - Florida, 2005)
NCAA 'A' Automatic: 1:42.15
NCAA 'B' Consideration: 1:49.09

Georgia's ​Chase Kalisz, ​a 2016 Olympian, showed some speed this morning taking the top seed with a 1:42.84. Kalisz made his move on the breaststroke leg to take over the lead from defending SEC champion in this event, ​Joe Patching​ of Auburn, who will be the third seed going into tonight's final in 1:43.00. Florida's ​Mark Szaranek ​took the second spot with a 1:43.00 and will look to put up some team points with his two UF teammates in this final. It took a 1:44.86 to qualify for the championship final, so this will be a very tight race tonight.​

Top 8 Finalists

1.) Chase Kalisz (Georgia): 1:42.84
2.) Mark Szaranek (Florida): 1:43.00
3.) Joe Patching (Auburn): 1:43.32
4.) Gunnar Bentz (Georgia): 1:44.24
4.) Jan Switkowski (Florida): 1:44.24
6.) Anton McKee (Alabama): 1:44.47
7.) Michael Duderstadt (Auburn): 1:44.80 
8.) Alex Lebed (Florida): 1:44.86

50 Freestyle

SEC Meet Record: 21.34 (Arianna Vanderpool-Wallace - Auburn, 2011)
NCAA 'A' Automatic: 21.80
NCAA 'B' Consideration: 22.99

​Olivia Smoliga​ of Georgia, defending SEC and NCAA champion in this event, took the top spot in the preliminary heats this morning with a 21.82. The senior Olympian will be challenged by her teammate ​Chantal Van Landeghem​, who tied for second with Tennessee's ​Madeline Banic​ in 22.0​0. Watch for ​Beryl Gastaldello​ of Texas A&M to be the wildcard in tonight's final. The Aggie Junior finished fifth at last year's NCAA Championships with a 21.88.

Top 8 Finalists

1.) Olivia Smoliga (Georgia): 21.82
2.) Chantal Van Landeghem (Georgia): 22.00
2.) Madeline Banic (Tennessee): 22.00
4.) Bailey Scott (Alabama): 22.21
5.) Kira Toussaint (Tennessee) 22.24
6.) Beryl Gastaldello (Texas A&M): 22.32
7.) Leah Troskot (LSU): 22.39
8.) Haylee Knight (LSU): 22.43

SEC Meet Record: 18.23 (Caeleb Dressel - Florida, 2016)
NCAA 'A' Automatic: 19.09
NCAA 'B' Consideration: 20.19

Welcome to the ​Caeleb Dressel ​show! You know Dressel has changed the game when he drops an 18.51 in the 50 and nobody bats an eye. The junior from Florida claimed the top spot in the preliminary heats by over half of a second and was the only one under the 19-second barrier. Don't expect anyone to challenge tonight and look for him to break his own SEC meet record of 18.23. ​Cory Bolleter​ of Texas A&M finished second in 19.04, and ​Kyle Decoursey ​of Tennessee finished third with a 19.21.

Top 8 Finalists

​1.)​ Caeleb Dressel (Florida): 18.51 (NCAA 'A')
2.)​ Cory Bolleter (Texas A&M): 19.04 (NCAA 'A')
3.)​ Kyle Decoursey (Tennessee): 19.21
4.)​ Zane Waddell (Alabama): 19.35
5.)​ Michael Chadwick (Mizzou): 19.41
6.)​ Peter Holoda (Auburn): 19.50
​ Zach Apple (Auburn): 19.59
7.) Enzo Martinez Scarpe (Florida): 19.59
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