Sidelines with John Clay

Kentucky’s freshmen shine at SEC swimming championships

UK’s Madison Winstead celebrates after winning the silver medal in the 100 breaststroke at the SEC Swimming and Diving Championships in Knoxville, Tenn. on Friday, Feb. 17, 2017.
UK’s Madison Winstead celebrates after winning the silver medal in the 100 breaststroke at the SEC Swimming and Diving Championships in Knoxville, Tenn. on Friday, Feb. 17, 2017. UK Athletics

A pair of Kentucky freshmen won medals at the 2017 SEC Swimming and Diving Championships on Friday at the Allan Jones Intercollegiate Aquatic Center in Knoxville.

With one day left at the meet, the Wildcat women have moved into fourth with 659 points and the men are in 10th with 321.5 points.

Here are the highlights:

▪ Freshman Madison Winstead won silver in the 100 breaststroke. Seidt set a program record by going 51.40 to best Danielle Galyer’s previous record of 51.44 set at the NCAA Championships a season ago. Winstead graduated from Paul Laurence Dunbar High School in Lexington.

▪ Freshman Asia Seidt out of Sacred Heart High School in Louisville took the bronze medal in the 100 backstroke. Also setting a program record, Winstead touched the wall in 59.86 to become the first the Wildcat woman to record a time below a minute in the event.

▪ In the women’s 400 medley relay, UK’s Galyer, Winstead, Seidt and Geena Freriks teamed up to swim an NCAA automatic qualifying time of 3:32.30 to finish fourth.

▪ In the men’s 400 medley relay, Walker Thaning, Wyatt Amdor, Kyle Higgins and Sean Gunn went 3:11.19 to lower the record by nine-hundredths of a second.

▪ “It was another great day for us,” said head coach Lars Jorgensen. “To finish the day with two school record in those last relays for both the girls and the guys was fantastic. Madison and Asia were both fantastic. The future looks bright. They’re both warriors and they really fought hard. Tomorrow’s a big day for everybody, so we need to finish strong.”

▪ In the women’s 200 butterfly, sophomore Haley McInerny went 1:56.89 to win the B final and finish ninth overall with a personal record. McInerny’s time was the seventh-fastest in the finals overall.

▪ Freshman Kierston Farley-Sepe also won the C final in the women’s 200 butterfly, posting a personal record with a time of 1:57.35, moving her to fourth in the event inside UK’s record book.

▪ Seidt was joined in the 100 back championship final by Galyer, who swam a 52.53 to finish sixth and earn important points for the Wildcats. Junior Bridgette Alexander competed in the B final of the event, where she placed third in the heat with a time of 53.00.

▪ Senior Kendra Crew made the B final of the women’s 100 breast, where she placed 11th overall with a time of 1:01.06.

▪ In the men’s 200 fly, Higgins earned the top time for the Wildcats, finishing 11th overall with a time of 1:43.93. Sophomore Matthew Beach and junior Jacob Smith competed in the C final of the event. Beach went 1:44.65 to place 19th overall, and Smith touched the wall in 1:45.52 to take 23rd.

SEC Swimming and Diving Champonships recaps

▪ On the platform, senior diver Becca Hamperian advanced to the finals for the second straight year after posting a score of 272.65 in the prelims. In the finals, Hamperian bettered her score, earning a 274.05 to place fifth overall to improve on last year’s performance at the meet where she placed sixth in the finals with a 252.20 tally.

▪ Saturday’s competition follows the same schedule as previous days. Prelims are set for a 10 a.m. ET start, diving prelims at 1 p.m. and finals will begin at 6 p.m. Saturday’s events will include the 1650 free, 200 back, 100 free, 200 breast, men’s platform and 400 free relay.

Related stories from Lexington Herald Leader