FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – The University of Arkansas swimming and diving team will be back in the pool Saturday at 2 p.m. when it hosts Florida and Kansas at Arkansas Natatorium.
"Florida is the toughest team we are going to see in-season, and we have a lot of great teams on our schedule," Arkansas coach Jeff Poppell said. "Florida is loaded with not only some of the top swimmers in the United States, but also in the world. This is going to be a tough meet for our first home meet, but I have always said we need to swim teams like this because these are the type of teams we are going see in the postseason. If you avoid that type of competition, you are only hurting yourself.
"Kansas has always been a team that is a challenge for us. I know that in two of the last three years, the meet has come down to the last relay, so it was really close. We look pretty good on paper right now, but Kansas has some girls that can compete and will be strong."
The Razorbacks are coming off a pair of season-opening victories over the University of Kentucky and the University of the Cumberlands. Eight event wins carried the Hogs to a 166-132 victory over the Wildcats and a 254-40 rout of the Cumberlands. Southeastern Conference swimmer of the week Yi-Ting Siow recorded the nation’s fastest times this season in the 100-yard breaststroke and 200y individual medley to win both events at the meet in Lexington, Ky.
Arkansas racked up nine first-place finishes on the way to a 165-135 victory in its last meeting with the Jayhwaks, a dual meet Jan. 22 at Arkansas Natatorium. Siow led the way with wins in the 100y breaststroke, 200y breaststroke and 400y IM.
The Hogs last faced off with the Gators Jan. 5 in Gainesville, Fla., falling 114-86. Arkansas collected four first-place finishes, with its best showing in the 200y breaststroke, where the Razorbacks took the top four spots. They followed that up by taking first, third and fourth in the 400y freestyle relay.
"Between the two teams," Poppell said, "we are in for a very competitive meet this weekend, without a doubt."
Saturday’s meet will feature 14 swimming events and two diving events. The first 500 fans in attendance will receive an Arkansas Razorbacks lanyard. Admission is free.
The Arkansas Natatorium is located on the corner of Stadium Drive and Meadow Street within the Health, Physical Education and Recreation (HPER) Building. Lot 67 off of Meadow Street between Razorback Road and Stadium Drive is available to fans free of charge on weekends.