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Abby Arens, Quintin McCarty Play Starring Roles as NC State Takes Down Kentucky

After earning a pair of dual-meet wins against Tennessee last weekend, NC State returned home to face off against another SEC opponent, the Kentucky Wildcats, and once again, head coach Braden Holloway’s Wolfpack came out on top. The NC State women beat Kentucky 172-126 despite 100 backstroke NCAA champion and American-record holder Katharine Berkoff missing the meet. The Wolfpack men won 188-105 with men’s 100 back NCAA winner Kacper Stokowski racing only a single event as an exhibition swimmer.

Abby Arens was the standout performer for NC State’s women as she captured first place in the 200 butterfly (1:55.65), 100 freestyle (49.33) and 200 IM (1:58.35). A pair of fifth-year swimmers won two individual races each as Emma Muzzy took the 100 backstroke (53.45) and 200 backstroke (1:55.34) while Kylee Alons hit the wall first in the 50 free (22.46) and 100 fly (52.60).

Other NC State individual wins came from Brooke Travis in the 1000 free (9:57.19), Abbey Webb in the 200 free (1:47.44) and Heather MacCausland in the 100 breaststroke (1:00.59). Kennedy Noble, MacCausland, Alons and Meghan Donald won the 200 medley relay (1:37.84), while Alons, Webb, Katherine Helms and Annabel Crush took first in the 400 free relay (3:20.43).

Kentucky’s first win in swimming did not come until the 200 breast, where Gillian Davey won in 2:11.30. Izzy Gati edged out Travis in the 500 free, 4:50.31 to 4:50.74, while Kyndal Knight took first in 1-meter (329.18) and 3-meter (354.98) diving.

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NC State’s missed out on first place in only three events all day against the Wildcats, and the Wolfpack spread the wealth with 10 different individuals claiming wins. Freshman Quintin McCarty was the star with top marks in the 100 back (47.02) and 100 free (43.43), while Luke Miller swam a quick mark of 1:34.78 to win the 200 free. Mason Hunter won the 100 breast (54.37), and Noah Bowers went 1:45.66 to win the 200 fly before David Curtiss (19.38) and Nyls Korstanje (19.51) lit up the pool in the 50 free.

Hunter Tapp cruised to a 200 back win in 1:45.78, and Conall Monahan surged on the back half to take the 200 breast in 2:00.01. Aidan Hayes, a former Swimming World High School Swimmer of the Year, led a 1-2-3-4 finish in the 100 fly in 47.70, with Bowers (47.93), Giovanni Izzo (48.36) and Bartosz Piszczorowicz (48.56). Patrick O’Brien won 3-meter diving for NC State (331.95), and in the men’s 200 IM, Sam Hoover surged home to pass Kentucky’s Mason Wilby and win the 200 IM (1:48.96 to 1:49.18).

Hayes, Hunter, Korstanje and Curtiss won the 200 medley relay in 1:25.38, and the 400 free relay went to Curtiss, Piszczorowicz, McCarty and Miller in 2:52.52.

Kentucky’s men saw Levi Sandidge claim wins in the 1000 free (8:57.81) and 500 free (4:26.25), although Stokowski went faster (while wearing a tech suit) with an exhibition effort of 4:20.40. Sam Duncan won 1-meter diving for Kentucky (339.98).

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