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Feb. 22, 2013


COLLEGE STATION, Texas — The South Carolina swimming and diving teams broke two more school records on Friday to highlight the fourth day of the 2013 SEC Championships at the Texas A&M Student Recreation Center Natatorium.

Junior Jay Warner set the school record in the men’s 100 backstroke championship final, while the Gamecock men’s relay team shattered the school record in the 400 medley relay. Of the nine Carolina swimmers in the finals, six of them swam NCAA B cuts and four posted lifetime bests. At the end of the night, the Gamecock men remained in eighth place in the team standings with 444.5 points, and the Carolina women stayed in 11th with a total of 192. Florida leads the men’s standings (1,038), while Georgia sits atop the women’s (1,058).

“We were good tonight. The guys were still sharp,” South Carolina head coach McGee Moody said. “The girls are having a hard week. It’s been a tough time for them racing wise, but the guys are just sharp right now. We are in a pretty good place. We’ve got to keep hammering. This meet is a grind. It’s a long, long meet. Hopefully, we can wrap it up strong tomorrow and continue to improve and put a lot of folks back in the finals tomorrow night.”

Warner had a career swim in the 100 backstroke championship final, finishing fifth with a school-record of 47.26, breaking his own record of 47.36. Warner’s finish secured 25 points for the Gamecocks. His previous best finish in the event at the SEC Championships was 11th in 2011. Sophomore Michael Covert raced in the C final and finished fifth (21st overall) with a time of 48.94.

Junior Michael Flach barely missed out on the medal stand for a second straight night as he finished fourth with a NCAA provisional qualifying time and lifetime best of 1:43.42, which was .38 of a second behind third place. His time is the second fastest in school history and seventh fastest in the country this season. Junior Gerard Rodriguez won the C final with a personal best of 1:46.78, which ranks fourth all-time at South Carolina. Junior Matt Navata also swam in the C final and finished 17th overall with a NCAA B cut and lifetime best of 1:47.45.

South Carolina set its second school record of the night in the men’s 400 medley relay, as the team of Warner, Graham Kauffman, Flach and Alex Fitton finished sixth with a NCAA B cut of 3:11.83, which broke the old record by more than two seconds (3:14.06). The finish earned 48 points in the team standings.

The Gamecocks had three swimmers in the men’s 100 breaststroke final. Kauffman led the way in the B final, finishing eighth (16th overall) with a NCAA B cut of 55.05 to score 11 points for the team. In the C final, senior Bobby Cave finished seventh (23rd overall) with a time of 56.17, while sophomore Alex Vance placed eighth (24th overall) with a swim of 56.28.

In the women’s 100 breaststroke B final, junior Amanda Rutqvist claimed seventh (15th overall) with a swim of 1:00.80, which was .8 of a second off her own school record of 1:00.20.

South Carolina will wrap up the SEC Championships on Saturday, beginning with the preliminaries, which begin at 10 a.m. CT. On the schedule for the morning are the 100 freestyle, 200 backstroke, 200 breaststroke, men’s platform diving and the 1,650 freestyle. Live results and video will be available here.

Friday, February 222013 SEC Swimming & Diving ChampionshipsCollege Station, Texas - Student Recreation Center NatatoriumDay 4 FinalsMen's 200 Butterfly4. Michael Flach   1:43.42 (NCAA B cut, PR)17. Gerard Rodriguez    1:46.78 (NCAA B cut, PR)21. Matt Navata      1:47.45 (NCAA B cut, PR)
Men's 100 Backstroke5. Jay Warner 47.26 (School record, NCAA B cut, PR)21. Michael Covert 48.94
Men's 100 Breaststroke16. Graham Kauffman 55.05 (NCAA B cut)23. Bobby Cave 56.1724. Alex Vance 56.28
Women's 100 Breaststroke15. Amanda Rutqvist 1:00.80 (NCAA B cut)
Men's 400 Medley Relay6. Warner, Kauffman, Flach, Fitton3:11.83 (School record, NCAA B cut)
Women's 400 Medley Relay11. Peteh, Rutqvist, Brockington, Raczkowski3:43.93
Team StandingsMen1. Florida 10382. Auburn 823.53. Georgia 6794. Tennessee 570.55. Missouri 5316. LSU 530.57. Texas A&M 517.58. South Carolina 444.59. Kentucky 367.510. Alabama 302
Women1. Georgia 10582. Texas A&M 9853. Florida 852.54. Tennessee 8105. Auburn 6576. LSU 4327. Arkansas 4068. Missouri 3919. Kentucky 326.510. Alabama 26411. South Carolina 19212. Vanderbilt 140