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Feb. 17, 2012

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — South Carolina had seven swimmers qualify for Friday night’s finals at the 2012 SEC Championships at the Allan Jones Aquatic Center at the University of Tennessee.

Along with the qualifiers, the Gamecocks posted five NCAA provisional qualifying times and 13 personal bests.

Sophomore Rachael Schaffer got Carolina off to a solid start as she qualified for the championship final of the women’s 400-yard IM with a NCAA B-cut of 4:11.81. Schaffer now has a chance to improve on her sixth-place finish at last year’s SEC Championships. Sophomore Abby Galbreath will compete in the consolation final after swimming a NCAA B-cut of 4:16.72.

In the men’s 400 IM, sophomore Matt Navata posted a NCAA provisional time of 3:51.05 to finish 10th to advance to the consolation final. Senior Ryan Connolly finished in 17th place with a PR of 3:56.38, which was .27 seconds outside of the top 16.

The Gamecocks had three swimmers miss the finals after swimming personal bests, as junior Max Heinze (48.91), junior Collin Kaden (48.95) and sophomore Jay Warner (48.98) finished 19th, 20th and 21st, respectively.

In the men’s 200-yard freestyle, sophomore Gerard Rodriguez advanced to his second-straight consolation finals with an 11th-place finish in a NCAA provisional time of 1:37.45.

Sophomore Amanda Rutqvist advanced to the women’s 100-yard breaststroke consolation final with a NCAA B-cut of 1:01.54. In the men’s race, junior Andrew Seiler (55.91) and junior Bobby Cave (56.03) placed 17th and 18th, respectively. Seiler missed making the finals by .08 of a second and Cave by .20 of a second.

In the final event of the morning, the Gamecocks sent two swimmers to the consolation final of the men’s 100-yard backstroke. Sophomore Jay Warner swam a 48.68 to place 11th, while junior Max Heinze touched in 49.03 to finish 14th.

The finals are slated to begin tonight at 6 p.m. Live results and live video will be available at

Miller Advances to Men’s Platform Diving Final
South Carolina freshman diver Cole Miller advanced to his second final of the SEC Championships on Friday with a NCAA Zone qualifying score of 330.30, finishing seventh out of 26 divers. Miller also advanced to the men’s three-meter springboard final earlier in the week, claiming sixth place.

Miller will compete in the finals tonight at 5:30. Sophomore Andrew Helmich produced a career-best score of 224.90 to finish 25th.

Thursday, February 17
2012 SEC Swimming & Diving Championships
Knoxville, Tenn. – Allan Jones Aquatic Center
Day 3 Preliminary Results
Women’s 400 IM

8. Rachael Schaffer 4:11.81 (NCAA B-cut)
14. Abby Galbreath 4:16.72 (NCAA B-cut)
21. Annika Jonsson 4:20.63
23. Whitney Avers 4:22.54
26. Jordan Gibbs 4:29.38 (PR)

Men’s 400 IM
10. Matt Navata 3:51.05 (NCAA B-cut, PR)
17. Ryan Connolly 3:56.38 (PR)

Women’s 100 Butterfly
24. Meghan Brockington 55.07
32. Lauren Raczkowski 56.56
33. Sara Drake 56.59

Men’s 100 Butterfly
19. Max Heinze 48.91 (PR)
20. Collin Kaden 48.95 (PR)
21. Jay Warner 48.98 (PR)
27. Isaac Badillo 49.34
30. Jake White 51.57

Women’s 200 Freestyle
27. Lindsey Olson 1:52.18
32. Morgan Brooks 1:53.28
X. Taylor Josserand 1:54.04

Men’s 200 Freestyle
11. Gerard Rodriguez 1:37.45 (NCAA B-cut)
20. James Crawford 1:39.06
28. Brooks Ross 1:42.09 (PR)
31. Matt Columbus 1:43.13

Women’s 100 Breaststroke
11. Amanda Rutqvist 1:01.54 (NCAA B-cut)
27. Aileen Atzhorn 1:04.46

Men’s 100 Breaststroke
17. Andrew Seiler 55.91 (PR)
18. Bobby Cave 56.03
21. Graham Kauffman 56.31 (PR)
24. Alex Vance 56.88 (PR)

Women’s 100 Backstroke
20. Matea Peteh 56.11 (PR)
30. Elisabeth Worrell 57.30 (PR)
X. Lauren Rosenberg 57.06

Men’s 100 Backstroke
11. Jay Warner 48.68
14. Max Heinze 49.03
24. Michael Covert 49.92 (PR)