MEN'S SWIMMING: Gators trounce Virginia

The number two University of Florida men's swimming and diving team defeated number 10 Virginia Friday night at the Stephen C. O'Connell Center Natatorium by a score of 128-113.

The win lifts the Gators overall record to 10-1, including a mark of 3-1 in the Southeastern Conference, while the loss drops the Cavaliers to 8-1 overall, with a mark of 3-0 in the Atlantic Coast Conference.

The Gators, who never trailed in the meet, captured six event titles and registered six NCAA provisional marks as well.

The Gators opened an early lead thanks to the 400-yard medley relay team of Ryan Lochte (Daytona Beach, Fla.), Will Ratliff (Mt. Sterling, Ky.), Gabriel Mangabeira (Piratininga, Brazil) and Darian Townsend (Montrose, South Africa) who recorded a season-best and NCAA provisional time of 3:14.13.

Lochte, who picked up two individual wins on the night, registered first-place finishes in the 1000 and 500-yard freestyle events in times of 8:59.54 and a NCAA provisional mark of 4:22.99 respectively.

Recording the only sweep of the night for the Gators was the trio of Zach Wilcox (Yarrow Point, Wash.), Vitor Assuncao (Orlando, Fla.) and Chris Comfort (Coral Springs, Fla.) who swept the top-three places in the three-meter springboard event with scores of 358.80, 307.95 and 280.57.

The duo of Wilcox and Assuncao added another one-two punch for the Gators in the one-meter springboard event by registering scores of 359.47 and 317.99 to take first and second-place.

Also earning a sweep of the top-two places was the tandem of Kris Wiebeck (Tampa, Fla.) and Brian Hartley (Indianapolis, Ind.). The pair recorded NCAA provisional times of 1:45.64 and 1:47.08 in the 200-yard backstroke to finish in first and second-place for the Gators.

In his first dual meet action of the season, Mangabeira would have a strong meet as he added a second-place time of 1:48.09 in the 200-yard butterfly, while placing third with a time of 20.55 seconds in the 50-yard freestyle.

Senior Adam Sioui (Ontario, Canada) registered another Gator NCAA provisional time when he placed second in the 200-yard freestyle in a clocking of 1:38.50. Sioui also claimed third-place in the 100-yard freestyle, touching the wall in a time of 45.29 seconds.

The second-ranked Gators return action Saturday as they host number 15 Tennessee, in what will be the final SEC dual meet for 10 Gator men's swimmers and divers. Diving is scheduled to begin at 11 a.m., while the swimming is scheduled to begin at 1 p.m. at the O'Connell Center.

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