Jan. 24, 2014
SWIMMING AND DIVING AT LOUISVILLE
When: Saturday, January 25, 2014 at 4 p.m. ET
Where: Ralph Wright Natatorium, Louisville, Ky.
Additional Info: Twitter | Facebook
Video: Jorgensen, Christian and Bechtel Preview Louisville
** UPDATE: Due to winter weather in the Lexington area and throughout Kentucky, today’s meet at Louisville has been delayed until 4 p.m. ET.
LEXINGTON, Ky. – The rivalry between Kentucky and Louisville continues Saturday when the UK swimming and diving team visits its in-state neighbors. The meet will begin at 4 p.m. ET at the Ralph Wright Natatorium in Louisville.
The meet marks the final road meet of the regular season for the Wildcats and the second-to-last contest of the 2013-14 regular season campaign.
“It’s going to be a great meet, they’re an outstanding program,” UK head coach Lars Jorgensen said. “It’s exciting, it’s a rivalry meet and we’re looking forward to a great meet. It’s easy to get the team fired up this week. It will be a challenge, but it’s something we’re looking forward to facing a really good program, and we’ll be ready to go.”
Saturday’s meet in Louisville marks the fifth meeting between the two schools across all sports during the 2013-14 season. It will be the first contest in Louisville after UK posted a 3-1 mark in Lexington. Kentucky’s wins came courtesy of the men’s and women’s basketball teams and the women’s soccer team, while the Cardinals’ win came on the football field.
SCOUTING THE CARDINALS
The Louisville men are 5-1 in dual meets this season, while the women are a perfect 7-0. Both teams opened the 2013-14 campaign with a win over Xavier before the women placed third at the SMU Classic. The Cardinals swept Tennessee at home and opened November with a women’s win and men’s loss in a two-day competition at North Carolina.
U of L beat Georgia Tech, Cincinnati and Houston to open 2014. The women beat Notre Dame last weekend, and the men host the Fighting Irish Friday night in a warm-up to hosting Kentucky.
LAST TIME OUT: UK AT ALABAMA, VS. ARKANSAS
After over six weeks off from competition, Kentucky returned to action on Jan. 11 against Alabama and Arkansas. Against the two Southeastern Conference foes, the Wildcats registered eight wins and 10 second place finishes.
Christina Bechtel and Abby Myers, both juniors, along with Kelly Berger, a freshman, each recorded a win and runner-up finishes. Bechtel finished second twice, while Berger placed second in the women’s 1650 freestyle. Myers tallied her first win of the season, with a 2:00.74 in the women’s 200 yard butterfly.
Berger, a Northport, Ala., native, came away with the win in the women’s 500 yard freestyle and Bechtel won the women’s 100 yard butterfly by 0.01 seconds. Bechtel, who owns the school record in the event, finished in 54.72. Freshman Kendal Casey, junior Christa Cabot, seniors Greg Ferrucci, Blake Freeman and Lucas Gerotto also notched wins for UK.
UP NEXT: VS. CINCINNATI
The Wildcats host their final home contest of the season, Feb. 1 at 12 p.m. ET against Cincinnati at the Lancaster Aquatics Center. The senior day meet marks the end of the regular season for Kentucky.
SEC HONORS BECHTEL, FERRUCCI AND FLYNN
The Wildcats have been honored with four Southeastern Conference Athlete of the Week honors this season. Freshman Brandon Flynn was named the Freshman of the Week on Oct. 29, while junior swimmer Christina Bechtel and senior diver Greg Ferrucci were honored with the season’s first Athlete the Week awards on Oct. 15. Bechtel was honored again on Nov. 27 with Swimmer of the Week accolades.
Bechtel broke two school records, set two meet records and recorded three NCAA `A’ or `B’ qualifying times in seven events Nov. 22-24 at the Ohio State Invitational to earn her second SEC honor. Competing against four teams, three of them ranked in the top 14 nationally, Bechtel posted career best times in all individual events.
Flynn was named the SEC’s Male Freshman Swimmer of the Week for the first time in his career after he won all four events he competed in against Missouri and Southern Illinois over two days. Flynn recorded his first collegiate win in the men’s 400 individual medley, and, eight events later, he returned to the water to win the men’s 500 freestyle. The next day, Flynn won the 1,000 yard freestyle in 9:21.94 before leading the way as the UK men finished one-two-three in the 500 yard freestyle.
Ferrucci, who has won all four diving events to open the year, was named the SEC’s Male Diver of the Week for the eighth time in his career. Ferrucci recorded wins in all four competitions to start the season. At Georgia on Sept. 25, he notched victories in the 1- and 3-meter dives, while the senior swept the diving events again at home against Ohio State on Oct. 11.
Bechtel earned her first career SEC Female Swimmer of the Week honor after a two-win performance Oct. 11 against Ohio State. On the strengths of two wins in the butterfly against Ohio State, Bechtel was ranked second nationally in the 100-yard butterfly after she finished first with a time of 54.34. Bechtel, an NCAA qualifier last year, also posted a win in the 200-yard butterfly against the Buckeyes.
THE JORGENSEN FILE
Lars Jorgensen is in his first season as head coach at Kentucky after serving as an associate head coach for the Wildcats last season. A 1988 Olympian and standout student-athlete at the University of Tennessee, Jorgensen served as interim head coach for his alma mater in 2011-12. He also spent time on the coaching staffs at Toledo and LSU.
As a student-athlete at UT, Jorgensen holds the school record in the 1,000 freestyle, set in 1992. He earned a silver medal at the 1993 SEC Championships in the 1,650 freestyle and helped the Volunteers to a third-place finish.
At the 1988 Summer Olympic Games in Seoul, Jorgensen placed ninth in the 1,500-meter freestyle. His brother Daniel also competed in 1988, making them the second pair of brothers to participate in an Olympics. Daniel returned to the Olympics in 1992 and won a bronze medal as part of the 800 freestyle team, while their father, Niels, was an Olympic wrestler for Denmark.
UK returns all four student-athletes that competed at the 2013 Men’s and Women’s NCAA Championships. Senior diver Greg Ferrucci is coming off fourth-place finishes in all three NCAA events and became the first diver to earn First-Team All-America honors in one season on the 1 meter, 3 meter and platform. Senior John Fox and juniors Christina Bechtel and Christa Cabot made their first NCAA appearance in 2013.
2013-14 CAPTAINS ANNOUNCED
Seniors John Fox and Maclin Simpson and junior Michael Christian were named captains of the UK men’s team, while juniors Christina Bechtel, Christa Cabot and Lindsay Hill were announced as captains of the women’s squad.
A LOOK AT THE 2013-14 SCHEDULE
The 2013-14 campaign features dual or tri meets with five SEC foes and two home competitions. In addition to Oct. 11’s home opener against Ohio State, the Wildcats welcome Cincinnati to Lexington on Feb. 1 at noon at the Lancaster Aquatics Center on the UK campus.
The 2014 SEC Championships will be held Feb. 18-22 in Athens, Ga. The NCAA Women’s Championship will be in Minneapolis, Minn., March 20-23, while the men’s national championship will be March 27-30 in Austin, Texas.
The complete 2013-14 schedule can be found here.
For complete news and updates on the Kentucky Swimming and Diving program, go to UKathletics.com/SwimmingDiving. Breaking news, behind-the-scenes updates, photos and more can be found on Twitter at @UKSwimDive and Facebook at Facebook.com/UKSwimDive.