Faulkner paces `Dores at Georgia Tech Invite

Nov. 22, 2013


ATLANTA, Ga. – Elly Faulkner and the Vanderbilt swim team sit in fifth-place after the first day of action at the Georgia Tech Invitational in Atlanta. The `Dores have tallied 165 points through the first six events. The University of Tennessee leads the pack with 328 points.

Fourteen Commodores advanced through the preliminary round and onto the finals session. Faulkner had the most impressive swim of the morning in the 200 IM, finishing in school record fashion with a time of 2:02.71, shaving 7.18 seconds off her season-best time.

“I thought we had a really good first day,” said head coach Jeremy Organ. “We got good swims from everyone, and it really helped us today. I thought Elly winning the 200 IM and setting the school record in the IM during the prelims was the highlight of the day.”

Vandy had seven advance in the 200 IM, led by Faulkner. It also had two swimmers advance in the 500 free and four move on in the 50 free.

The `Dores began the finals session with a sixth-place finish in the 200-yard freestyle relay. The team of Christina Wang, Kayla Moran, Hannah Martin and Caroline Thomas finished with a time of 1:35.40. Moran finished with the fastest split time of the group, swimming her 50 in 23.36.

Both Carrie Bencic and Kathryn Babbin represented the VU in the 500-yard freestyle. Both freshman, despite finishing outside the top 10, improved drastically on their season-best times. Bencic cut nearly five seconds off her time, finishing with a personal best 4:57.45, good for 13th in the event. Babbin finished in 25th with a time of 5:03.60 but shaved just about eight seconds off her previous season best time.

Faulkner once again led Vanderbilt in the 200 IM, taking the top-spot with a time of 2:02.91, three seconds faster than the second-place finisher. Alexandra Blankenburg took fourth in the IM with a time of 2:05.32. Chandler Soapes (16th), Olivia Leunis (24th), Alyxandra Vernon (25th), Bencic (28th) and Alexis Mayhall (29th) closed out the event for the `Dores.

Moran led the Commodores in the 50 free, finishing with a time of 23.70, good for seventh in the event. Wang and Thomas came in 16th and 19th, respectively.

Vanderbilt closed out the day with a fourth-place finish in the 400 medley relay. The group of Chrissy Oberg, Faulkner, Moran and Thomas touched the wall with a time of 3:45.15.

“We’ll be swimming in a few more events tomorrow so it is going to be more important for us to do well in the morning to advance to the finals,” Organ said. “There is a lot of really good competition here which forces us to put out really good swims in the morning so we can move on. I think this experience will be good for our team as we look ahead and get ready for SEC’s.”

The `Dores will look ahead now to Saturday’s action at the Georgia Tech Aquatic Center, which will showcase the 200 medley relay, 400 IM, 100 fly, 200 free, 100 breast, 100 back and 800 free relay. Once again, prelims will begin at 10 a.m., and finals will get underway at 6 p.m. The live web stream of the finals session will be available via Georgia Tech All-Access.