The University of Tennessee swim team traveled north to face off against Louisville at Ralph Wright Natatorium in a top 25 match up on Oct. 30. The U of L women’s swim team is ranked eighth nationally while the men’s team is ranked 13th.
The Tennessee women’s and men’s team are ranked tenth and eleventh, respectively.
The U of L women’s team downed Tennessee 163-135, and the U of L men came back from behind to tie 150-150.
Head Coach Arthur Albiero said he was extremely proud of how both teams performed.
“We have great respect for Tennessee, and we challenged the group to step up,” Albiero said after the meet. “Across the board we performed. We usually have a few highlights, but today we had a lot of highlights. I’m proud of the way the men battled back to tie after it looked pretty bleak. For the ladies it was huge because we haven’t beat them in a few years, and it was a nice accomplishment.”
For the U of L women’s team, freshmen Mallory Comerford and Rachael Bradford-Feldman both won multiple events. Senior Kelsi Worrell added three wins for the women. Trevor Carroll took home three wins as well.
Carroll said after the match that it was a battle for the men’s team.
“A lot of the events didn’t go our way, but we fought extremely hard. In the last two races we did exactly what we needed to do to tie. Even though it didn’t look great for us, we just kept swimming,” Carroll said.
In the final two races, the men had two first and third place finishes. These strong finishes put the Cardinals from being down 141-123 to tying 150-150. The relay team of Grigory Tarasevich, Carlos Claverie, Josh Quallen and David Boland won the 200-medley relay to end the meet.
For the women, they jumped up early on the Lady Vols and didn’t give them a chance to come back. Tennessee was able to pull close after the 100 free bringing the meet to 97-90, but that was the closest they could get.
In the 100-breast the Cardinals were able to pull off a sweep, which gave them a big advantage. Andrea Cottrell won with Bradford Feldman in second and Lucy Kramer rounding it off.
The women’s team finished the night off by taking first and third in the final relay. The team of Alina Kendzior, Andrea Kneppers, Cottrell and Worrell put it away.
Despite being very excited for this big win, Coach Albiero says they will need to focus for their trip to North Carolina.
However, the Cardinals brought home a few wins earlier this month.
Just a few days before the meet against Tennessee, the Cardinals took on Cincinnati, and the Bearcats didn’t have a chance. The U of L men won 226-74 while the women’s team won 212-87.
On Oct. 9, Louisville faced off against Xavier and came away with two more victories. The U of L men won 179-78 and the women took a 173-83 win.
With all the success of this season — along with the past five years, which have produced five national champions — one would think the pressure would get overwhelming. Not for Coach Albiero though.
“Coach Pitino said to our team a few years ago that pressure is a great thing. Pressure means you’re doing something exciting and productive. I don’t feel pressure. I love it, and I love being here,” Albiero said. “The only pressure is from the other teams here. Our athletic department is doing amazing things, and I’m honored to be a part of this group.”
The teams will travel to Chapel Hill to face UNC on Nov. 6.
Photo by Wade Morgen / The Louisville Cardinal