Article Image

McLiney grabs platform dive gold at SEC

February 21, 2014
Courtesy: Texas A&M Athletics
(photo: Texas A&M Athletics)

Athens, Ga. --- Texas A&M junior diver Ford McLiney grabbed his second gold model of the 2014 Southeastern Conference Championships with a come-from-behind victory in the platform dive on Friday.

McLiney, from Kansas City, Mo., nailed his sixth and final dive of the competition to propel himself to the top of the leaderboard. Executing a back 3 1/2 somersault pike to near perfection, McLiney received a score of 86.4 to vault from fourth to first. But as the No. 6 seed, he had to withstand the final dive of the five remaining divers. When top-seed David Bonuchi of Missouri, who had a score of 444.15 in the prelims, closed out the competition, McLiney’s  415.20 had held up for the victory.

“I had pretty settled on that I was going to medal but that David Bonuchi was going to win with his last dive,” McLiney said. “He’s such a great and clutch competitor. It’s a great feeling to come out on top, and score some points for my teammates. My last dive is definitely the toughest dive on my list, really the toughest dive we have. It’s so hard that sometimes it hurts me, but if I hit it, it’s a winner. It’s so hard, it’s insane.”

The Aggies opened the meet with senior Omar Enriquez flying to his lifetime best in the 200 butterfly. Enriquez, who also had a lifetime best in the prelims, touched the wall in 1:45.53, which is an NCAA B cut and makes him the No. 3 performer in school history in the race.

A&M put a pair of swimmers in the finals of the 100 backstroke in sophomore Alexandros Theocharidis and senior Paul-Marc Schweitzer. The pair finished fourth and fifth in the C final with Theocharidis edging out Schweitzer 47.89 to 47.96. Schweitzer’s 47.96 was a lifetime best and put him at No. 7 in the A&M record book.

The Aggies scratched a point in the 100 breaststroke with senior A&M Consolidated High School product Jack Burley finishing 24th with a time of 55.46. Earlier in the day, Burley had glided to a lifetime best and NCAA B cut time of 54.89, which ranks No. 7 on A&M’s all-time top 10 list.

In the final race of the day, the foursome of Theochardis, Burley, senior Henrik Lindau and sophomore Cory Bolleter placed 10th in the 400 medley relay with a time of 3:12.99.

The Aggies finished the day in seventh place with 471 points. Florida leads the way with 1,097.5 points, followed by Auburn (1,017.5), Georgia (806), Missouri (572), Tennessee (568), Alabama (506), Texas A&M, LSU (425), Kentucky (417) and South Carolina (416).

Aggies in the Top 24

200 Butterfly

14.    Omar Enriquez                    1:45.53 B

100 Backstroke

20.    Alexandros Theocharidis    47.89 B

21.    Paul-Marc Schweitzer      47.96 B

100 Breaststroke

24.    Jack Burley                            55.46 (54.89 B)

Platform Dive

1.      Ford McLiney                       415.20


Feb. 18-22, 2014

Saturday, February 22

Prelims - 9 a.m. CT
Men's and Women's 100 Freestyle
Men's and Women's 200 Backstroke
Men's and Women's 200 Breaststroke

Prelims - 12 p.m. CT
Women's Platform Diving

Finals - 3 p.m. CT
Men's and Women's 1,650 Freestyle

Finals - 5 p.m. CT
Men's and Women's 100 Freestyle
Men's and Women's 200 Backstroke
Men's and Women's 200 Breaststroke
Women's Platform Diving
Men's and Women's 400 Freestyle Relay

Texas A&M hires Calanog as assistant swimming coach
SEC Network
Texas A&M
The Parking Spot
Raising Canes
C.C. Creations
Uploaded Ad