Feb. 29, 2012
ATHENS, Ga. --- The Georgia women's swimming team will have the highest number of participants at the NCAA Championships, according to the meet selections released on Wednesday.
The Lady Bulldogs will have 16 swimmers at the NCAAs, which will be held March 15-17 in Auburn. Cal has the second-highest total at 14, followed by Southern Cal and Texas with 13 each; Virginia with 12; Auburn, Indiana and Minnesota with 11 apiece; and Arizona, Florida, Texas A&M and Wisconsin with 10 each.
Participating at the NCAAs for the Lady Bulldogs will be Kelsey Gaid, Jessica Graber, Lauren Harrington, Maddie Locus, Jana Mangimelli, Melanie Margalis, Jordan Mattern, Amber McDermott, Michelle McKeehan, Megan Molnar, Shannon O'Malley, Megan Romano, Kristen Shickora, Wendy Trott, Nicole Vernon and Shannon Vreeland.
"Depth really means a lot in meets, especially one as big as the NCAAs," Georgia coach Jack Bauerle said. "With depth, you have options on the relays and you have the ability to place a lot of people in a few events and gain some valuable points. We're excited about the group we're taking to the meet. They've worked hard to get to this point, and we believe we'll be in the conversation at the end. We're really looking forward to this opportunity."
Romano (200 freestyle) and McDermott (500 freestyle) have the nation's fastest times in their events, while the Lady Bulldogs own the country's top effort in the 800 freestyle relay. Romano is also fourth in the 100 freestyle and fifth in the 100 backstroke. Trott is second in the 1,650 freestyle and third in the 500 freestyle, while Vreeland is fourth in the 200 freestyle and McDermott is fifth in the 1,650 freestyle. Trott has won the national title in the 1,650 freestyle each of the past three years and can become the first woman to claim four titles in the mile.
Georgia can add up to two divers for the NCAAs. The Lady Bulldogs' team of Ann-Perry Blank, Ansley Long, Darcie O'Brien and Landon Watters will compete in the Zone B Championships in Auburn March 5-7 as they attempt to advance to the championship meet.
The meet selections for the men's NCAAs will be announced next week.