FAYETTEVILLE — The University of Arkansas swimming and diving team came up short against the Georgia Bulldogs in the Swim for the Cure meet to promote breast cancer awareness, falling 187-113. Despite the loss the Razorbacks had many highlights, including redshirt sophomore Shana Lim’s school record in the 100 backstroke, 54.95.
Arkansas came out of the gate strong snagging the top finish in the first event, the 200-yard medley relay, with a time of 1:42.29, good for fifth all-time in school history. The relay team of Lim, sophomore Nikki Daniels, sophomore Susanna White and freshman Nina Drolc combined for the top finish.
“The team did a good job starting off the meet and coming out and winning that first relay,” head coach Sean Schimmel said. “It was really nice to see the energy level.”
In the 1,000-yard freestyle, impressive performances by sophomore Lauren Jordan (9:58.36) and senior Chelsea Franklin (10:06.51), who took second and fourth respectively, helped the Razorbacks as Georgia took first and third in the event. After event two, the Razorbacks and Lady Bulldogs were tied, 18-18.
The most electrifying moment for the Razorbacks came in event four when Lim broke the school record in the 100-yard backstroke with a time of 54.95, besting the previous record held by former UA swimmer Kelsea Vance. The time was good enough to give Lim an NCAA ‘B’ cut time. Freshman Lyndsie Gibson was the next to touch the wall in the 100 backstroke, clocking a time of 57.88. After Lim’s strong performance the Razorbacks began to inch closer to the Lady Bulldogs, trailing by just eight points (41-33).
“I think breaking a school record on October 19 in Shana’s second competition for the university is just really nice,” Schimmel said. “I think it’s setting yourself up for the rest of the season at 54 seconds right now.”
The Razorbacks followed Lim’s record-breaking performance with three top-five finishes in the 100 breaststroke. Nikki Daniels picked up the best time in the event, taking second (1:02.38). The strong performances kept the Razorbacks in contention with the Lady Bulldogs, trailing by only 13, 53-40.
In the 200-yard butterfly, it was junior Liz Braun who touched the wall first with a time of 2:03.93. Georgia took the top two spots to extend their lead to 68-44. Sophomore Susanna White took second place in the 50 freestyle with a time of 23.70. Drolc and junior Alexandria Sutton came in fourth and fifth to score for the Razorbacks with times of 23.77 and 24.28 respectively.
The Razorback divers put up big numbers on the three-meter board snagging three of the top four spots. It was freshman Hannah Bortnick who stole the show however, taking the first-place finish with a score of 309.45, besting her previous score by more than 55 points. The strong performance earned the freshman an NCAA Zone Diving qualifying score, making her the second diver to qualify this season, as junior Kesha Naylor qualified in the Razorback Relays. Naylor picked up second on the three-meter board with a score of 301.43, while freshman Shelby Bartlett took fourth with a score of 273.60. The top scores on the boards brought Arkansas closer to catching Georgia, 99-70.
“I was extremely excited and pleased with Hannah Bortnick’s three-meter performance,” head diving coach Dale Schultz said. “That was her second meet ever.”
Freshman Anna Mayfield out-touched the Lady Bulldogs taking the top time in the 200-yard backstroke with a time of 1:58.69, which was an NCAA ‘B’ cut time.
In the 200-yard breaststroke, the Razorbacks were in a tight race with the Lady Bulldogs as Daniels was narrowly beaten by Georgia with a time of 2:15.08 to take second place. Sophomore Julia Banach touched the wall just after Daniels for third place, clocking a time of 2:18.27.
Jordan returned to the pool after her second-place finish in the 1,000 freestyle to take second for the Razorbacks in the 500 freestyle with a time of 4:50.24. Franklin (5:00.68) and freshman Rachel Stoehr (5:02.16) took fourth and fifth place respectively. The Lady Bulldogs maintained a strong lead over the Razorbacks leading, 128-79.
On the one-meter board the Razorbacks once again placed three divers in the top five with Naylor taking second place overall with a score of 275.55.
On the final event Drolc, White, freshman Maddie Monroe and Lim combined for a second-place finish in the 200-yard freestyle relay. Georgia would take the meet win with a final score of 187-113.
The Razorbacks will travel to Columbia, Mo. next weekend to take on Missouri, Kentucky and Southern Illinois on Friday, Oct. 26 at 2 p.m.