Women's Swimming and Diving preview: Auburn and Georgia
What: No. 12 Texas (1-3) resumes the 2006-07 dual-meet season when it takes on No. 3 Auburn and No. 6 Georgia. The Texas-Auburn meet has been designated the National Meet of the Week by SwimmingWorldMagazine.com. The meet also marks the return to Auburn for first-year UT head coach Kim Brackin, who coached at Auburn from 1997-2005 and served as the co-women's head coach during the last three years of her tenure. As the Auburn co-women's head coach, Brackin helped lead the Tigers to NCAA titles in 2003 and 2004 and a NCAA runner-up finish in 2005.
Where: James E. Martin Aquatics Center, Auburn, Ala./Gabrielsen Natatorium, Athens, Ga.
When: Auburn on Thursday, Jan. 11 at 6:30 p.m. Central; Georgia on Saturday, Jan. 13 at 11 a.m. Central
Last UT-AU meeting: First meeting between the two schools
Last UT-UGA meeting: Georgia dealt Texas a 157.5-142.5 defeat on Jan. 14, 2006 at the Lee and Joe Jamail Texas Swimming Center in Austin.
About Texas: Texas opened its dual-meet season on Oct. 12 with a 144-81 win at Nebraska before taking second place the next day at the Big 12 Relays. UT hosted its first home meet on Friday and Saturday, Oct. 27 and 28 when Stanford, then ranked No. 6, dealt the Longhorns a 195-150 defeat. Texas visited No. 5 Texas A&M on Friday, Nov. 3 and suffered a 174-125 loss before falling to No. 12 Indiana by a 138-105 margin on Saturday, Nov. 4 in Austin.
The Longhorns closed out the Texas Invitational with five NCAA automatic-qualifying berths on Saturday, Dec. 2. Texas ended the three-day meet in third place with 551 points.
Junior diver Mary Yarrison has twice been selected as the Big 12 Conference Women's Diver of the Week. Yarrison earned league honors on Oct. 25 after capturing the one- and three-meter events at Nebraska and on Nov. 8 after claiming the one- and three-meter events at Texas A&M.
Senior Elizabeth Tinnon already has qualified to participate in the 100- and 200-yard breaststroke events at the 2007 NCAA Championships. Tinnon posted NCAA automatic-qualifying marks in the 100 breaststroke against Stanford (1:01.70) and in the 100 (1:00.45) and 200 (2:13.38) against Texas A&M. She became the first Longhorn ever to complete the 100-yard breaststroke in less than one minute, clocking 59.96 at the Texas Invitational for the fastest time in the country. Tinnon added a NCAA "A" cut time of 2:11.86 at the Texas Invitational. She was named the Big 12 Women's Swimmer of the Week on Dec. 13.
Seniors Leah Avilla (1:01.61 - 100 breast; 2:13.61 - 200 breast), Connie Brown (53.47 - 100 fly; 49.18 - 100 free), Katie Robinson (1:58.08 - 200 fly) and sophomore Alexi Spann (1:02.37 - 100 breast; 2:12.75 - 200 breast) also posted NCAA automatic-qualifying marks at the Texas Invitational.
UT returns eight All-Americans from the 2006 squad that placed eighth at the NCAA Championships. The eight All-America returnees for Texas are seniors Stephanie Anderson (Scottsdale, Ariz.), Avilla (Livermore, Calif.), Brown (Andover, Mass.), Elaine Ferritto (Columbus, Ohio); Robinson (Dillsboro, Ind.) and Tinnon (Bowling Green, Ky.); junior diver Jessica Livingston (Houston, Texas) and sophomore Hee-Jin Chang (Seoul, Korea).