The Georgia Men's and Women's Swimming & Diving teams finished out their home schedule at Gabrielsen Natatorium this weekend with the conclusion of the Bulldog Last Chance Meet. The purpose of this meet is to do, quite simply, what its name suggests, which is to give swimmers and divers one last shot at qualifying for the NCAA Championships in a couple of weeks. All in all, a number of swimmers improved their qualifying times, though the final results of who qualified won't be out until later in the week.
Diver Darcie O'Brien qualified for the NCAA Zone B diving championships, jand will join fellow teammates Owen Blank, Alex Watson, Ann-Perry Blank, Landon Watters, and Ansley Long at the Zone B Championships in Auburn next month. The divers must then be one of the top performers at the Zone B Championships in order to advance to the National Championships later in March.
In the pool, several swimmers improved their performances thus far to earn B-Cut times in their respective events. B-Cut times provisionally qualify the swimmers for the NCAA Championships, but those qualifications may or may not stand pending the results from other Last Chance Meets around the country. Swimmers earning (or improving on) B-Cut times were: Jessica Graber, Spencer Rowe, Shannon O'Malley, Olivia Boggs, Sommers Creed, and Anna Neumeister.
In addition to these fine athletes, there are several AquaticDawgs who already punched their ticket to the NCAAs by earning A-Cut times in the SEC Championships last weekend. The men who have qualified are Peter Benner, Martin Grodzki, and Nic Fink, while the ladies have travel itinerary for Megan Romano, Wendy Trott, Kristen Shickora, Amber McDermott, Shannon Vreeland, Michelle McKeehan, Melanie Margalis, and Jana Mangimelli. Also qualifying by virtue of competing on the relay teams are Jordan Mattern and Maddie Locus.
Other than serving as a means for additional swimmers to qualify for the NCAAs, the meet is also important in that it's the last time the teams will have a chance to compete in the water before the national tournament. Because of this, some members of the teams who had already qualified for nationals were also competing in the Last Chance Meet to fine tune their skills late in the season and stay fresh.
Let's congratulate all these young folks on their accomplishments, and, as always...