LSU Athletics Creative Services

Swimming & Diving Sweeps Loyola and Tulane

Chris Heigle
Chris Heigle
Communications Student Assistant

BATON ROUGE – The LSU swimming and diving team swept Loyola and Tulane on Friday evening at the LSU Natatorium. The men beat Loyola by a score of 164-63, while the women beat Loyola 254-34 and Tulane 175-125.

“We obviously want to race against in-state competition when we can,” said LSU swimming head coach Dave Geyer. “It was a race against the clock for the men, and I feel like they stepped up. We went after our lineup normally on the men’s side, so we got a good taste of where people are.”

The men’s victory was highlighted by the performances of Lewis Clough, Luca Pfyffer, Joao Mescolote, Karl Luht, Thomas Smith, and Jake Markham, all of whom won multiple events throughout the meet.

Clough won four events, the first one as a part of the 200-yard medley relay, which won with a time of 1:31.23. Individually, Clough won the 200-yard freestyle with a time of 1:40.22, and the 100 butterfly, touching the wall at 49.63. He closed the night on the 400-yard freestyle relay, winning the race at 3:03.98.

Pfyffer went on to win three events throughout the evening. Pfyffer swam the second leg of the 200-yard medley relay with Clough. The freshman also won the 100-yard breaststroke at 56.78 seconds and the 200-yard breaststroke at 2:03.10 in his first competitive meet as a Tiger.

“Luca’s from Switzerland, so over there they don’t have yards pools. I put some of the freshmen in only one of their main events, but for him I put him in everything he races pretty well in. He needs to get used to short-course yards. It doesn’t seem like three and a half feet is a huge difference, but when you’re so used to [meters], it takes some adaptation.”

Mescolote, like Pfyffer, also won three events. Mescolote anchored both winning relays of the day, the 200-yard medley relay and the 400-yard freestyle relay, while also winning the 50-yard freestyle with a time of 20.69 seconds. Karl Luht started both relays and won the 100-yard backstroke with a time of 49.05 seconds.

Thomas Smith and Jake Markham each finished the meet with two wins.

The Lady Tigers won thanks to standout performances by Summer Spradley, Ellie Baldwin, and Gabrielle Pick, as they each won multiple events.

“On the women’s side, Tulane pushed us,” noted Geyer. “They pushed us harder than they have in a long time. We’re not as healthy as we need to be. We had some people not race today, which certainly hurt us in depth. We’re a young team, and we still have a lot of growing up to do this year.”

Spradley won four events during the meet. She started the evening as part of the 200 yard medley relay team that won with a time of 1:44.14. Spradley then went on to win the 100 yard breaststroke and the 100 yard free with times of 1:03.82 and 51.50 seconds, respectively. The junior ended the meet with a win as well, anchoring the 400 yard freestyle relay that finished with a time of 3:28.64.

Baldwin and Pick won two events each as they helped the Lady Tigers solidify the win.

The men and women also won both the one-meter and the three-meter diving events. Juan Celaya-Hernandez won the one-meter with a score of 344.78 and the three-meter with a score of 432.08. Junior Lizzie Cui won the one-meter, scoring 279.68, as well as the three-meter, posting a score of 399.90.

“There were a lot of really good things I saw that are building blocks of what we need to do,” said LSU diving head coach Doug Shaffer. “I also saw the things that we need to make an impact change on, but that’s what this meet is for. There’s both some good and some drawing-board stuff, but overall I was very pleased.”

After the meet, manager Kayne Finley, who has been with diagnosed with diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma (DIPG), was recognized by the team. A commemorative video of Kayne played while he received a letterman jacket from the team captains. Kayne’s dedication to the team is what catalyzed the September meet being dedicated to Childhood Cancer Awareness Month.

“It got a little emotional for me out there,” said Geyer. “His persona, his personality, how he carries himself through this diagnosis, has been amazing. [The ceremony] was awesome today.”

The Tigers travel to Pittsburgh next to take on Pitt and Virginia on October 20th and 21st at Trees Pool.

For more information and updates on LSU Swimming and Diving please visit LSUsports.net, 'like' us on Facebook at LSU Swimming and Diving or follow us on Twitter and Instagram @LSUswimdive.

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