Pantano, Laitarovsky Set New School Records
Columbia, S.C. – South Carolina swimming continued action at the Gamecock Invitational on Thursday with the women winning six of their seven events and the men winning five of theirs.
Junior Bella Pantano took down her own school record in the 100 back during the morning’s preliminary heats. She swam a 53.29 to set the new record. Pantano then went on to lower her own record again in the finals, swimming a 53.26 for first place.
Sophomore Michael Laitarovsky also took down his own school record in the 100 back. The Natanya, Israel, native flew through the event and touched the wall in 45.92 for the new record.
Gamecock Swimming Notables
- South Carolina’s women started the night off strong, earning a sweep in the 200 medley relay. The ‘A’ team of Megan Maholic, Georgia Johnson, Nicholle Toh, and Janie Smith combined for a time of 1:38.70 which ranks at fourth in program history. The ‘B’ team swam a 1:39.42 which was good for seventh in program history and the ‘C’ team swam a 1:39.97 which is eighth in program history.
- Graduate Victoria Kwan took first place in the 400 IM with a time of 4:11.75, making her third third fastest swimmer in program history. She was followed by Laura Goettler in second place and Meaghan Harnish in third.
- Toh claimed the top spot in the 100 fly with a 52.87, Page Collins placed second (53.51), and Greta Pelzek placed third (53.62).
- Smith swam her best 200 free of the season, breaking out a 1:46.53 for first place and tying her as the 6th fastest in program history. Freshman Amy Riordan stopped the clock just behind Smith at 1:46.86, marking her spot at 9th in the program record books.
- Johnson and senior Taylor Steele went 2-3 in the 100 breast with Johnson swimming a 1:02.06, securing her spot at 9th place in the program record books.
- South Carolina’s men placed first in the 200 medley relay. Michael Laitarovsky, Daniel West, Guy Gropper, and Patrick Groters combined for a time of 1:27.01.
- The Gamecock men swept the 400 IM with Groters placing first (3:48.04), Jay Baker placing second (3:49.38), and Chase Allison placing third (3:55.00).
- Fifth-year senior Rafael Davila swam the team’s fastest 200 free of the season, clocking in a 1:38.90 for second place.
- Senior Daniel West and sophomore Liam Kerns went 1-2 in the 100 breast with West swimming a 54.85 and Kerns touching just behind him at 54.86.
Gamecock Diving Notables
- The Gamecock divers had three entries qualify for finals on the first day of competition. Graduate Brooke Schultz advanced on the 3-meter springboard and both senior Manny Vazquez Bas and freshman Charley Bayer advanced to the 1-meter springboard finals.
- Schultz won the 3-meter springboard for the women, posted a 382.10 for first place.
- Both Vazquez Bas and Bayer placed in the top-10 of the men’s 1-meter event. The senior scored a 287.75 which was good for eighth place and the freshman scored a 280.55 to place just behind his teammate in ninth place.
Up next for the Gamecocks
South Carolina’s swimmers will conclude action at the Gamecock Invitational on Friday. Prelims will begin at 10 a.m. with the 200 back, 100 free, 200 breast, 200 fly, and 1650 free. Finals will follow at 4 p.m. with the addition of the 400 free relay.
South Carolina’s divers will continue competition at the Tennessee Invitational on Friday beginning at 12:30. The men will compete in the 3-meter event and the women in the 1-meter event. Diving will be live streamed on the SEC Network+.
For all the latest South Carolina swimming and diving information, continue to follow GamecocksOnline.com or the team on social media (@GamecockSwim).