Strong Start at South Carolina

One record falls, multiple individuals move into top 10 at Vandy

COLUMBIA, S.C. — A record-setting relay in the final event of the night Wednesday highlighted Vanderbilt swimming performance on the first day of the Gamecock Invitational at the USC Natatorium.

The Commodores closed the opening night of the three-day competition with the quartet of Sophia Kosturos, Faith Knelson, Kailia Utley and Ellie Taliaferro posting the program’s fastest mark ever in the 400 medley relay. Kosturos and Taliaferro were joined by Emily Carpenter, Megan Ciezczak and Abby Francis in recording times that rank among the top 10 all-time on Vandy’s all-time performer list in individual events as well.

Knelson, Kosturos and Madelyn Porter also recorded individuals victories in finals at night for the Dores.

The second day of the Gamecock Invitational is set to begin with preliminary heats Thursday at 9 a.m. CT.

Meet Highlights
-The Dore’s opened the evening session with the 200 free relay team of Francis, Ciezczak, Kosturos and Taliaferro finishing second overall.
-Mercedes Traba placed fifth in the A Final 500 free, with Carpenter touching the wall in the fourth in the B Final of the event.
-Taliaferro and Francis finished third and fifth, respectively, in the A Final of the 200 IM.
-Knelson won the 200 IM B Final, and Maddie Smith placed third in the race for Vandy as well.
-In the A Final of the 50 free, Ciezczak finished fourth while Francis was ninth.
-Kosturos added another victory for Vanderbilt in the 50 free B Final, with Hannah Weissman and Karsyn Cook also among the top five in the race.
-Porter’s victory came in the D Final of the 500 free.
-The Commodores posted a third-place result in the 400 medley relay in the final race of the night.

-Vandy’s time of 3:37.66 in the 400 medley relay was almost three seconds faster than the previous mark set at the 2014 SEC Championships.
-The Dores’ 200 free relay squad posted the second-fastest mark in school history, finishing in 1:31.87 to fall only .12 seconds shy of current standard.
-Both relays met the CSCAA NIC A Standard for the first time this fall.
-Taliaferro touched the wall in a career-best 2:00.98 in the 200 IM final, moving the sophomore into second on the Commodores’ all-time performer list in the event.
-Ciezczak’s career-best 23.31 time in the 50 free final tied the fifth-fastest mark on the school’s all-time list.
-Carpenter (4:56.38) and Francis (2:03.57) moved into seventh-place all-time in the 500 free and 200 IM, respectively.
-With a 23.47 mark in the 50 free final, Kosturos entered Vandy’s top-10 all-time performer list in ninth place.
-Traba’s time of 4:52.60 in the final of the 500 free met the CSCAA NIC B Standard.
-Knelson (2:02.79) and Francis also posted NIC B Standards in the 200 IM.
-Weissman posted a career-low 23.71 time in the 50 free.