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Nov. 4, 2011

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GAMECOCK SWIMMING & DIVING
November 4, 2011
Team Men Women
Tennessee 167 174
South Carolina 132 124
Coach Moody

COLUMBIA, S.C. — Despite several strong performances, the South Carolina swimming and diving teams dropped both the men and women’s meets against Tennessee on Friday at the Blatt P.E. Center/Carolina Natatorium. The Gamecock men (2-3, 0-2 SEC) fell to the Vols, 167-132, while the Carolina women (3-2, 1-1) lost to the Lady Vols, 174-124.

The Gamecocks tallied 13 wins in 32 events, including two apiece from senior diver Courtney Forcucci and sophomore Gerard Rodriguez.

“We knew how fast (Tennessee) has been all year. They didn’t catch us off guard,” South Carolina head coach McGee Moody said. “We had some good races and we had some not so good races. We have to make sure we talk about the things we did well, but more importantly we need to fix what we are not doing well. You have to give Tennessee credit. They have put together some great programs over there. We are doing our best to keep up with them and are getting better every year but we are going to have to continue to improve.”

For the third straight week, Forcucci swept the boards for the Gamecock women. The Fort Mill, S.C., native cruised to a win on the three-meter springboard with a score of 360.08, which ranks as the top score in the SEC heading into the weekend. She also won the one-meter competition with a score of 296.63.

On the men’s boards, junior Rylan Ridenour took first place on the three-meter springboard by 21 points with a score of 396.82. Freshman Cole Miller contributed points with a second-place finish on the one-meter springboard with a score of 312.30.

“It is pretty comforting to know that you can rely on the divers at any point,” Moody said. “(South Carolina head diving) coach Todd Sherritt is doing a great job with all of the divers, not just Courtney. They are putting up solid points every meet.”

The Gamecock distance corps kept its stellar season going with wins in three of the four distance events. Junior Lindsey Olson claimed the women’s 500 freestyle with a time of 5:05.07, while Rodriguez won the men’s event in a time of 4:36.13. In the 1,000-yard freestyle, junior Jordan Gibbs grabbed first for the Gamecock women in a time of 10:21.05. Junior Brooks Ross finished second in the men’s 1000 free with a time of 9:23.93.

Rodriguez picked up his second win of the day with a mark of 1:40.34 in the 200 freestyle.

“This was a big meet for him,” Moody said of Rodriguez. “He looked a lot stronger than he has the last couple of weeks. He’s put up some wins the last few weeks, but today he was able to swim very smart races.”

Junior Andrew Seiler gave Carolina a win in the sprint events, as his time of 21.18 was good enough for first in the 50 freestyle. He also claimed second in the 100 freestyle (46.63).

The Gamecocks swept the 200 breaststroke, with sophomore Amanda Rutqvist claiming first in the women’s event (2:18.14) and junior Bobby Cave winning the men’s race (2:05.99). Rutqvist finish second in the 100 breaststroke.

Senior Isaac Badillo captured the 100 butterfly for Carolina with a time of 49.20.

Sophomore Rachael Schaffer won the women’s 400 IM by more than three seconds with a time of 4:22.04, while sophomore Matt Navata took first in the men’s 400 IM in a time of 3:58.78. Navata also finished second in the 200 butterfly.

The Gamecocks will begin preparations to wrap up their fall schedule at the Nike Cup Invitational, which runs Thursday, Nov. 17 through Saturday, Nov. 19 in Chapel Hill, N.C.

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