Lady'Backs declaw 18th-ranked Tigers

COLUMBIA, MO. – The University of Arkansas swimming and diving team downed the 18th-ranked Missouri Tigers Saturday at the Mizzou Aquatics Center, 151-149. The Lady Razorbacks also defeated Missouri State 247-53, marking the highest dual-meet score in the history of the program.

Junior Stephanie Carr and freshman Katie Kastes led the Lady’Backs with two wins each. Carr took first place in the 1,000 and 500 freestyles while Kastes touched in first in the 200 butterfly and the 200 individual medley. Carr’s time of 9:54.08 in the 1,000 free was good for second in the school records. Kastes’ 200-fly time put her name in every spot of the top-5 200-fly school records and her 200-IM time was a career-best.

Also picking up wins for Arkansas was junior Summer Jackson in the 100 breast, freshman Jamie Marks in the 200 breaststroke and senior Emily Gregory in the 100 fly. The Lady’Backs took first in the 200 medley relay.

“We swam lights out today,” said head coach Jeff Poppell. “I’ve never been as proud of a team as I am right now. They did a phenomenal job. I’m most proud of how the team supported each other from start to finish. It was truly a team effort today.”

Arkansas’ effort included seven wins from five different Lady’Backs, 26 season-best times and 22 career-bests. All of this came against two top-25 opponents on the road.

“Our goal all season has been to be a top-25 team,” said Poppell. “The fact that we swam against and beat the 18th-ranked team in the nation is just awesome. It is unbelievable how fast some of our athletes swam.”

The Lady’Backs started the meet with a first-place finish and season-best time in the 200 medley relay.

In the 1,000 free Carr, Marks and freshman Ashley Largo finished 1-3-4. Marks’ time of 10:02.58 was an individual best.

Kastes and freshman Erica Totten placed 3-4 in the 200 free. Kastes swam a 1:50.56 and Totten had the best time of her career with a 1:53.42. Freshman Megan Haskins, junior Macey Webb and freshman Shara Sutphen all touched in with personal-best times in the event.

Sophomore Lynette Ng had a runner-up finish in the 100 backstroke with a 57.64. Freshman Jessie Clark finished fifth with an individual-best 59.87 and freshman Kylie Kastes swam the event for the first time in her Lady’Back career earning a time of 1:02.13.

Three personal bests in the 100 breast by Jackson (1:04.85) and freshmen Erin Neumann (1:05.65) and Brittany Kimmitt (1:06.21) ended up in a 1-3-4 finish. Senior Katie McGraw placed eighth with a 1:07.77.

Katie Kastes’ won the 200 fly in 2:01.43 and Totten and Gregory placed third and fourth, respectively.

Ng finished second in the 50 free with a career-best time of 24.00, while Clark placed second in the 200 back with an individual-best 2:05.75. Senior Tifanie Silver followed touching in 5th with a personal-best 2:08.90.

In the 100 free, Jackson (52.63) placed third, followed by Gregory (53.48) in fifth, junior Emily Fletcher (55.25) and freshman Gina Bargiachi (58.72).

Marks (2:19.40), Kimmitt (2:20.03) and Neumann (2:21.09) touched in 1-3-4 in the 200 breast, all turning in career-bests.

Gregory took the 100 fly in 55.53 followed by Totten in fifth with an individual-best 58.26 and sophomore Allison Chinn in seventh with a season-best 58.92.

In the 200 IM, Kastes won with a personal-best 2:05.18. Marks took third with an individual-best 2:05.84. Haskins placed fourth with a career-best 2:07.15, almost four seconds faster than her previous personal best. Junior Elizabeth Engs touched in sixth with a season-best 2:07.98.

Arkansas finished 2-3-4 on the one-meter springboard. Junior Madison Palmer was second with a score of 267.00 and was followed by juniors Kellyn Williams (229.05) and Hilarie Wilson (221.90). Palmer was also runner-up on the three meter with a 292.60.

Arkansas ended the meet turning in a season-best time of 1:35.71 in the 200 free relay.

The Lady’Backs host Southeastern Conference opponent Vanderbilt in the Arkansas Natatorium Saturday, Jan. 19. Seniors Emily Gregory, Katie McGraw and Tifanie Silver will be honored in the last home meet of their career.

For more information about Arkansas swimming and diving, please log on to LADYBACKS.COM.