LAKELAND – Facing the top-ranked team in NCAA Division III, Florida Southern, which is ranked #6 in Division II, got two wins from Kelsey Gouge, a win from its 200-freestyle relay team, and a strong showing from freshmen Peyton Breault. Emory University, however, won Friday's meet, 176-105, behind eight different individual winners.
Gouge, a junior from Snellville, Georgia, earned her two wins in the 100-breaststroke and the 100-freestyle and also swam the leadoff leg for the victorious relay team. Her time of 52.22 seconds in the 100-freestyle was an NCAA "B" qualifying standard where she beat Emory's Nancy Larson by 1.15 seconds. Gouge edged out Annelise Kowalsky in the 100-breaststroke by three-tenths of a second.
In the last event of the meet, Gouge had a time of 24.38 seconds in her 50-yard leadoff leg of the 200-freestyle relay. The Moccasins went on to win that race in 1:38.51, with sophomore Cassie Ley (Hilton Head, S.C.), sophomore Elizabeth Fris (Holland, Mich.) and junior Alli Crenshaw (Marietta, Ga.) swimming the remaining legs. They combined to give Florida Southern its first win of the season that relay.
Crenshaw had a pair of runner-up finishes and one third for the Moccasins in her three individual races. She finished two seconds behind Emory's Mckenna Newsum-Schoenberg in the 1,000-freestyle, but still hit an NCAA "B" qualifying standard in that event. She then finished second to Dana Holt in the 200-freestyle by just 0.14 seconds. In her final individual race on Friday, Crenshaw was third in the 500-freestyle, another race won by Newsum-Schoenberg.
Breault had two third-place showings for the Moccasins in the two backstroke races. She swam the 100 for the first time this season, and her time of 1:00.53 jumped her into fourth place on Florida Southern's top times list. Breault was also the Mocs' top swimmer Friday in the 200-backstroke.
Florida Southern's top butterfly swimmers were Ley and sophomore Kourtney Gavin (Jacksonville, Fla.). Ley was second while competing in the 100-butterfly for the first time this year, and Gavin was right behind her in third. Gavin was also the Mocs' best swimmer in the 200-butterfly.
In the 200-IM, the Moccasins were led by freshman Jacinda Whittenburg (Lakewood, Colo.) and junior Morgan Burns (Hilton, N.Y.). In addition to their performance in the individual medley, Burns and Whittenberg were the Mocs' top performers in the 200-breaststroke as well.
Florida Southern's next meet will be less than 24 hours after facing Emory, with the Moccasins traveling to Davie to take on 11th-ranked Nova Southeastern at 1 p.m.