uk swimming2 300LEXINGTON, Ky. (1/12/14) – After over six weeks off from competition, the University of Kentucky swimming and diving team returned to action Saturday, where the UK women suffered a one-point defeat to Arkansas and both the men and women lost to Alabama.

The Wildcat women narrowly missed out on their second Southeastern Conference victory of the season in a 131.50-130.50 loss to the Razorbacks, who do not field a men’s team. The Crimson Tide downed the UK women, 152.00-110.00, and the UK men, 184.00-96.00.

“The women’s side of the meet was pretty close, we picked up a lot of victories,” UK head coach Lars Jorgensen said. “Christina Bechtel did really well along with Abby Myers, leading the way for UK. It was a really nice win from freshman Kelly Berger, who is from the Tuscaloosa area, so it was a nice homecoming for her. I was proud of the way the girls fought. We were a little rusty in some areas, you could tell we haven’t competed in six weeks.
“On the men’s side, we were a little shorthanded, but the guys were a little rusty as well. With six weeks off, it’s hard to get back into it again.”

Against the two Southeastern Conference foes, the Wildcats registered eight wins and 10 second place finishes. Bechtel and Myers, both juniors, along with Berger, a freshman, each recorded a win and runner-up finishes. Bechtel also helped a relay team to a second-place showing.

The Wildcats travel to in-state rival Louisville on Jan. 25 at 1 p.m. ET. The meet comes a week before UK’s final home contest of the season, Feb. 1 against Cincinnati at the Lancaster Aquatics Center.

UK’s first win of the day came courtesy of freshman Kendal Casey in the women’s 1650 yard freestyle. Casey notched a 16:51.73 to finish 0.45 seconds ahead of Berger.

Abby Myers tallied her first win of the season, with a 2:00.74 in the women’s 200 yard butterfly. She used a strong second half of the race to edge out teammate and fellow junior Christina Bechtel, who finished just 0.21 seconds later, in 2:00.95.

In the women’s 1-meter springboard, junior Christa Cabot posted a 311.50 to win the event by over five points.

The Wildcats added a win in the men’s 1-meter event, courtesy of Greg Ferrucci. The senior won the event by nearly 20 points, with a 353.33.

Berger came away with the win in the women’s 500 yard freestyle for UK’s fifth of the afternoon. The Northport, Ala., native finished in 4:54.37 and won by over a second, just miles from her hometown.

In the closest race of the day, Bechtel won the women’s 100 yard butterfly by 0.01 seconds. Bechtel, who owns the school record in the event, finished in 54.72.

Lucas Gerotto registered the UK men’s first swimming victory of the day in the men’s 100 yard butterfly. The senior touched the wall in 49.42 and won by 1.08 seconds.

UK’s final win of the day came courtesy of Blake Freeman with a 3:44.22 in the men’s 400 yard individual medley. The senior’s victory came by over 15 seconds.

Freshman Christopher Grimmett-Norris and senior Chris Lott each placed second in two events and third in another, while sophomore Scott Crosthwaite place second twice and third twice. Freshman Danielle Galyer notched two runner-up finishes.

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