It was quite an eventful weekend for the Virginia Cavaliers swimming and diving program. The UVA women’s swim & dive team raised the banner for the program’s first ever National Championship and then the Cavaliers faced off with another top-tier swim & dive program, the Texas Longhorns, at the Aquatic and Fitness Center on Friday and Saturday.
The Virginia women’s swim & dive team, ranked No. 1 in the country, took down No. 5 Texas 201-152 to remain unbeaten this season. The No. 9 UVA men’s swim & dive team was defeated by the No. 1 ranked Texas men, 223-122 and fell to 1-2 on the season.
The UVA women won seven events on Friday, including the final event of the day, to take a 103-102 lead into Saturday. The Cavaliers set five pool records on the day. Kate Douglass, Gretchen Walsh, Lexi Cuomo, and Alex Walsh won the 400-yard freestyle relay with a pool-record time of 3:14.14. Gretchen Walsh, Alexis Wenger, Alex Walsh, and Kate Douglass also won the 200-yard medley relay with a time of 1:34.25, which was also a pool record.
Emma Weyant finished first in the 1000-yard freestyle and also set a pool record with a time of 4:05.68 in her win in the 400-yard IM. Kate Douglass won the 50-yard freestyle with a pool record time of 22.07. Gretchen Walsh also set a pool record of 51.12 with her victory in the 100-yard backstroke. Finally, Alexis Wenger won the 100-yard breaststroke.
On the second day, the Virginia women placed first in all eight of the events. In the 400-yard medley relay, Gretchen Walsh, Alexis Wenger, Kate Douglass, and Alex Walsh crushed the pool record with a time of 3:29.07. Ella Nelson was victorious in both the 200-yard breaststroke and the 200-yard IM, setting a pool record in the latter. Emma Weyant won her third event of the weekend, finishing first in the 500-yard freestyle. Alex Walsh won the 200 backstroke and Gretchen Walsh won the 100-yard freestyle, setting a pool record with a time of 48.00. Douglass set a pool record to win the 100-yard butterfly. Finally, the relay team of Gretchen Walsh, Kate Douglass, Alex Walsh, and Lexi Cuomo won the 200-yard freestyle relay to finish the meet.
Texas swept all of the men’s and women’s diving events on Friday.
On the men’s side, Virginia was competitive with Texas, but came up just short, notching close second-place finishes in several events. Two UVA relay teams finished second and third, respectively, in the 400-yard medley. Matt Brownstead finished second in the 50-yard freestyle, with August Lamb right behind him in third. Noah Nichols finished second in the 100-yard and 200-yard breaststroke and Justin Grender was second in the 200-yard backstroke. Konnar Klinsiek finished second in the 100-yard butterfly, while Sean Conway finished just .14 seconds off of first place in the 200-yard IM.
It was an entertaining two days of events at the Aquatic & Fitness Center between two of the premier collegiate swimming & diving programs in the country.