FAYETTEVILLE – Freshman Katie Whitbeck and sophomore Katie Kastes each won two events, but it was Whitbeck’s red team on the strength of two relay victories that won the Arkansas swimming and diving team’s annual red-white meet by a mere eight points, 174-166, at the Arkansas Natatorium on Saturday morning.
Using the meet as a precursor to next week’s season opener, Arkansas head coach Jeff Poppell put together a short schedule that utilized his squad in both primary and off events. The Razorback coaching staff attempted to split the teams evenly in the annual bragging rights season opener and got just what they expected as the two squads battled back and forth throughout the two-hour event with the final score not getting decided until the final events.
“I thought today went very well,” Poppell said. “It was very informal. I really wanted the team to adjust to racing again. A majority of the squad had not raced since the summer and I wanted to get them in that mindset before we open the season next week at Tennessee. I thought that they did a very good job of racing especially since we have been training really hard over the past week. This was a great opportunity for them to dust off the cobwebs.”
Whitbeck was a double winner for the Red team taking victories in the 50 and 100-yard freestyle. Senior Stephanie Carr took the longest event of the day, the 500 freestyle while freshman Liana Bugslag won the one-meter diving competition. The Red squad also took victories in both the 200-medley and 200-freestyle relays.
The White squad would actually win more individual races than their teammates, but came up just short on the scoreboard. Kastes was a double winner in the 200 individual medley and 100 backstroke for Team White. Freshman Jillienne Shilling took the 200 freestyle with freshman Lisa Lunkenheimer winning the 100 butterfly. Senior Madison Palmer wrapped up the White victories with a win in the three-meter diving competition.
The Razorbacks open the regular season with a double-dual meet at the Univ. of Tennessee against the Lady Vols and Vanderbilt on Friday, Oct. 17. For more information regarding Razorback swimming and diving or University of Arkansas athletics please visit ArkansasRazorbacks.com.