In the first night of racing in Knoxville, Tennessee, the competitors set the tone of what’s to come in the next couple nights of swimming. If the next couple nights follow tonight’s example, it’s going to be a very fast meet. Highlights included:

Women’s 200 Medley Relay:

Georgia Junior and Fort Lauderdale native Chelsie Britt split a 23.16 50 fly, contributing to a 1st place finish and new pool record of 1:35.28. The Florida Gators finished in 8th place, with freshman Emma Ball (24.03), freshman Kelly Fertel (N/A), senior Alyssa Yambor-Maul (N/A), and Sherridon Dressel (22.40) combining for a 1:39.03.

Men’s 200 Medley Relay:

Clay High School graduate, Bolles School Sharks alumni, and current Florida junior Caeleb Dressel showed off why he’s the king of short course sprinting with his 17.90 anchor leg of the 200 medley. Let me say that again, 17.90. Dressel split the second fastest relay split in history, only .04 behind USC’s Olympian Vlad Morozov’s legendary 17.86 relay split, on the first night of racing at his conference meet. Dressel’s split lead Florida’s medley to a 1st place finish and a new SEC meet record of 1:23.44, with fellow Gators senior Jack Blyzinskyj contributing a 21.52 50 back, freshman Chandler Bray splitting a 23.89 50 breast, and junior Jan Switkowski splitting a 20.13 50 fly. Fellow Floridian and Lynn Haven native Michael Duderstadt lead Auburn’s medley to a 6th place finish with a 23.57 50 breast.

Women’s 800 Free Relay:

Floridian and Texas A&M sophomore Sydney Pickrem split a 1:44.67 to help Texas A&M grab the 800 free relay title. The Florida women finished again in 8th place with a time of 7:06.87, with junior Amelia Maughan (1:46.33), freshman Kelsey Dambacher (1:45.90), senior Taylor Katz (1:47.33), and freshman Kelly Fertel (1:47.31) making up the Gator quartet.

Men’s 800 Free Relay:

The Florida men took another victory and SEC meet record in the 800 free relay with Florida freshman Maxime Rooney blasting the fastest split of the field of 1:31.54 on the second leg of the relay. Yes, you read that right, a freshman split a 1:31.54. The other members of the relay included freshman Khader Baqlah (1:33.86), senior Mitch D’Arigo (1:34.11), and junior Mark Szaranek (1:32.67) finishing with a final time of 6:12.18. 

Men’s 1 Meter Diving: 

University of Florida men all contributed points to the Gator second-place team standing. Samuel Smith, Dylan Power, and Dalton Goss placed 9th (343.90), 15th (309.05) and 19th (291.25) respectively.

Women’s 3 Meter Diving: 

On the womens side- Abby Howell, Teya Syskakis, and Brooke Madden placed 15th (299.70), 17th (285.70) and 18th (282.60) respectively. All contributing points to the womens 7th-place team standing.

Women’s team standings after night 1:

1. Texas A&M – 158

2. Georgia – 155

3. Missouri – 146

4. Auburn – 141

5. Kentucky – 139

6. Tennessee – 132

7. Florida – 116

8. South Carolina – 90

9. Alabama – 87

10. LSU – 74

11. Arkansas – 58

Men’s team standings after night 1:

1. Texas A&M – 188

2. Florida – 165.5

3. LSU – 154

4. Tennessee – 144.5

5. Auburn – 128

6. South Carolina – 120

7. Alabama – 119

8. Kentucky – 111

9. Georgia – 104

10. Missouri – 70

You can follow the meet through the Live Results page here, or on the WatchESPN app via SEC Network

Written by Peter Brukx