No. 1 Vs. No. 2 Matchup Champions Open Season

Auburn, Ala.--A very early season matchup of No. 1 vs. No. 2 in the country will take place at the James E. Martin Aquatics Center on Friday as Auburn is host for a dual meet swim competition vs. the Georgia Bulldogs.

The featured matchup will be the three-time defending national champion Auburn women's team vs. the No. 1 ranked Georgia women's team. The Auburn men, who are also the defending national champs, will also open their dual meet season vs. the Bulldogs, who are ranked 16th nationally.

Competition begins at 4 p.m. and Auburn coach David Marsh says it should be interesting. "This is a heck of way to open the season," he says. "This gets the team's attention right away. It has been fun to see an invigorated team this week. They seem like they are really excited about the challenge, particularly the women's team which has fallen in ranking from one to two without swimming a meet. I think they are anxious to swim well.

"I can't predict the outcome of the women's meet," Marsh says. "I do know that I don't want it to come down to the last relay because they have several great freestylers. We will need to do our damage before the last relay to win the meet."

Looking at the men's competition, Marsh says, "Georgia is a strong team, but if we do what we are capable of doing we should be able to win. I think our guys are excited about the meet. There should be great energy at the meet. Hopefully, the stands will be packed. Georgia has enough powerful swimmers so they can make it challenging for us."

Coach David Marsh

Marsh says the Tigers are in their heavy training phase with two-a-days and they won't back off that schedule until Friday morning.

The AU women's team features Olympic champion Kirsty Coventry, who won three medals at the Athens Olympics. All-American and Olympian Margaret Hoelzer is Auburn's other senior star.

UGA has star power, too, with Olympians Kara Lynn Joyce, Sarah Poewe and Mar DeScenze leading a team that is 4-0 in dual meet competition this season.

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