By (Matt Speakman)

Alabama swimming and diving started off the season on a high note as both the men’s and women’s team picked up victories at Delta State. In the first meet of the season, the men won 213-49 and the women picked up a 219-42 victory.

The Tide men and women won a combined 26 straight events while sweeping both the relay and individual races. Thirteen different swimmers placed first in their respective events, with sophomore Paige Matherson and junior Jack Hadjiconstantinou picking up the first victories of the season.

Senior captain Crew Wellford was victorious in the 200 backstroke posting a time of 1:39.31. The Crimson Tide experienced victories from swimmers of all classifications. Freshmen Knox Averbuch (200 freestyle) and Katie Kelsoe (100 backstroke) brought home wins in the first meet of their collegiate careers.

“It was a good afternoon for us – they were racing hard.” UA head coach Dennis Pursley said in a press statement. “The team is progressing from year to year, and this was definitely a good start for us.”

Senior Emma Saunders picked up two wins in the meet, taking home top honors in both the 200 freestyle and the 200 backstroke. She also combined with junior Bridget Blood and sophomores Hannah Musser and Temarie Tomley to win the 400-meter medley.

“We’re starting out well ahead of where we did last year and we got some really aggressive swims from a number of our freshmen,” Pursley said.

Two-time NCAA champion Kristian Gkolomeev did not swim in tonight’s opener. He will see his first action in the Tide’s next meet when Auburn visits Tuscaloosa on Oct. 9.

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Source:: The Crimson White Sports