13 Dec 2021 | 10:43 | Swimming & Diving
FORT MYERS, Fla. – The Miami Hurricanes swimming & diving team opened their spring slate in impressive fashion Thursday afternoon, toppling host FGCU, 171-129, at the FGCU Aquatics Complex.
The win over FGCU was Miami’s fourth straight, a streak dating back to the fall of 2018. The performance also marked the Hurricanes’ second straight win in all competitions; Miami topped Vanderbilt in the Miami Invite in December.
“It’s always good to get a win,” head swimming coach Andy Kershaw said. “I’m certainly proud of how they competed and how they raced with that game day attitude, which is an important thing as we head towards ACC Championships. It’s certainly going to be an important aspect to have within our team.”
Paced by two individual wins from sophomore Adrianna Cera and three wins from freshman Savannah Barr, the Hurricanes saw team-wide success despite bringing only 16 swimmers to the meet.
“We’ve been working hard in training these last two weeks,” Kershaw said. “I told them, ‘Put all that behind you. Today, our focus is the energy as a team.’ That game day attitude, having fun as a group, getting the opportunity to have this experience…as we know, it should be cherished, this year in particular. We did a really good job in that regard.”
Cera started individual action in strong fashion for Miami (1-1), posting the top time of 10:32.02. Junior Emily Weissmann was third in 10:54.56.
The Hurricanes built on their early momentum by taking the top-two finishes in the 200-yard freestyle; Barr blew away the competition (1:51.43) in first while senior co-captain Carmen San Nicolas was second (1:55.27).
Senior Alaina Skellett kept the Hurricanes trending in the right direction, giving Miami the top finish in the third straight event – this one in one of her signature swims, the 100-yard backstroke (59.45). Freshman Emma Sundstrand added points for the visitors with a second-place finish in the 100-yard breaststroke (1:04.63).
Of Miami’s 16 swimmers, seven were involved in individual wins.
Diving captain Millie Haffety took care of business on the boards, cruising to an easy victory in the 3-meter (324.53) in the first event of the day. She completed a sweep of the springboard with top honors in the 1-meter later on Thursday afternoon, finishing with a score of 296.18. Sophomore Jessie Creed was second in the 1-meter (286.58).
Sophomore Isabel Traba delivered the top time in the 200-yard butterfly (2:07.19), while fellow sophomore Una Forsythe took third (2:11.40).
Barr (51.61) and senior co-captain Sydney Knapp (52.90) build a second wave of momentum as the top-two finishers in the 100-yard freestyle, while the Hurricanes swept the top-three finishes in the 200-yard backstroke thanks to sophomore Andrea Todorovic (2:06.67), Skellett (2:07.39) and freshman Lucy Ho (2:13.21).
Sundstrand took her second runner-up performance of the day in the 200-yard breaststroke (2:22.74) before back-to-back wins from Cera (5:09.04) in the 500-yard freestyle and Barr (56.55) in the 100-yard butterfly.
Miami’s top entry in the 400-yard freestyle relay – comprised of Barr, San Nicolas, Skellett and Knapp – closed the meet on a high note, with a winning time of 3:31.76 in the event, edging out FGCU (3:32.08) in a thrilling finish.
“From a performance standpoint, looking at times, certainly have some work to do,” Kershaw said. “There’s some factor in terms of elements, but we have to get to work and stay at work and keep riding above and polish up a few things. That’s what we’ll do. That’s what these opportunities show us.”
The Hurricanes return home for a Senior Day dual meet on Fri., Jan. 22 vs FIU. Action will begin at 3 p.m. from the Whitten Center Pool.