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Feb. 17, 2005

GAINESVILLE, Fla.–The University of South Carolina swimming and diving team opened the swimming portion of the Southeastern Conference Championships Wednesday with three season-best performances. The women placed third in the 800 free relay and seventh in the 200 medley relay while the men placed sixth in the 800 free relay.

The women’s 800 free relay, composed of junior Haley Skaggs and freshmen Christy Williams, Lauren Fayssoux and Carly Hensel, swam a season-best time of 7:18.36. In the 200 medley relay, senior Carolynn McHugh and freshmen Kasey Tamkun, Mandee Cregar and Christy Williams recorded a time of 1:44.06 for their best of the year.

On the men’s side, the 800 free relay of freshman Dan White, sophomore Colby Mack and juniors Reid Duff and Tamas Bathazi recorded a season-best time of 6:31.09. A false start led to a disqualification of the 200 medley relay.

“All in all, it was a good night for us,” said head coach Don Gibb. “The 800 relays were very good, although we are not where we need to be in the medleys. The women’s 800 free relay did very well and three of the four girls are freshmen.”

The University of Florida men’s and women’s 800 free relays both broke NCAA records. The men’s relay shattered the existing mark of 6:20.14 by posting a time of 6:16.25, while the women topped the existing mark of 7:01.00 with a time of 7:00.25.

The second day of competition begins tomorrow at 10 a.m. with the preliminary 500 freestyle. A schedule of events and full results can be found at