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Dec. 4, 2007

COLUMBIA, S.C. – Several members of the South Carolina swimming team captured Olympic Trial and NCAA “B” cut qualifying marks last weekend competing at the Alabama Classic. In all, seven student-athletes combined for 14 NCAA qualifying times, while three achieved Olympic Trial qualifying marks.

Sophomore Dominique Lendjel led Carolina with four individual NCAA cuts. He qualified in each of the events he participated in at the Classic, including the 100 backstroke (0:47.71), the 200 backstroke (1:44.49), the 100 butterfly (0:47.88) and the 200 IM (1:46.53). Additionally, Lendjel’s 200 IM time was not only a career best, but also the fastest swim in the Southeastern Conference so far this season. Classmate Andrew Atzhorn also turned in a strong 200 IM effort. His 1:48.49 in the event was also an NCAA “B” cut.

For the Gamecock women, freshman Claire Thompson continued to impress during her rookie campaign. She achieved three individual NCAA “B” cuts and two Olympic Trial times. Her swims in the 200 free (1:47.20/2:02.65*), and 500 free (4:46.75/4:17.87*) were each NCAA and Olympic Trial qualifiers, while her performance in the 1650 free (16:39.44) was also an NCAA “B” cut. Twin sister Christine Thompson also qualified for NCAAs, posting a season-best time of 4:52.41 in the 500 freestyle at the Classic.

Senior butterfly specialist Christy Williams qualified for both NCAAs and the Olympic trials with a strong performance in the 100 butterfly (54.72/1:02.39*), while teammates, freshman Megan D’Urso (2:03.87) and senior Carly Hensel (2:03.92), each qualified for NCAAs in the 200 IM.

(** Indicates time listed for race swam in meters)
Below is a complete list of South Carolina’s qualifiers:

NCAA B Cuts – (Times based on yard distance)

Dominique Lendjel
100 Backstroke (0:47.71)
200 Backstroke (1:44.49)
100 Butterfly (0:47.88)
200 IM (1:46.53)
** 400 Free Relay (qualified as lead-off)

Andrew Atzhorn
200 IM (1:48.49)

Claire Thompson
200 Free (1:47.20)
500 Free (4:46.75)
1650 Free (16:39.44)
** 400 Free Relay (qualified as lead-off)

Christine Thompson
500 Free (4:52.41)

Christy Williams
100 Butterfly (0:54.72)

Megan D’Urso
200 IM (2:03.87)

Carly Hensel
200 IM (2:03.92)

Olympic Trial Cuts – (Times based on meter distance)

Andrew Atzhorn
200 IM (2:06.59)

Claire Thompson
500 Free (4:17.87)
200 Free (2:02.65)

Christy Williams
100 Butterfly (1:02.39)