March 7, 2013
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. -
Two members of the Alabama women's swimming and diving team have punched their tickets for the upcoming NCAA Championships it was announced this week.
Senior Jenna Gallo and sophomore Kaylin Burchell have both earned a place in one of the fastest fields in the world. Gallo will swim the 1650 freestyle just a month after shattering the school record in that event at the Southeastern Conference Championships while Burchell will swim the 200 breaststroke after posting the second fastest time in school history at SECs.
"We're very proud of both Jenna and Kaylin," UA head coach Dennis Pursley said. "Both women have had to overcome adversity this season and both have really toughed it out to make this field. For Jenna in particular, to be able to end her career by making her first NCAA Championship appearance is pretty special."
Gallo swam career-best times in the 500 and 1650 freestyles at the SEC Championships, including a 16:13.56 in the 1650, which shaved nearly five seconds off the school record and more than 13 seconds off her previous best time.
Burchell will be making her second consecutive trip to the national championships. After posting a career-best 2:10.36 in the 200 breaststroke at the SEC Championships, she is now ranked second all-time for the Tide in both the 100 and 200 breaststrokes.
In addition to the Tide's swimming duo, as many as three UA divers could make the NCAA Women's Championships. While swimmers advance to NCAAs by a combination of time standards and national rankings, divers have to earn a spot at the NCAA Zone Championships. Alabama competes out of Zone B where on March 11-13, junior Paige McCleary and sophomores Angely Martinez and Lisa Bogosian will be vying for a place at nationals.
The NCAA Women's Swimming and Diving Championships will be held March 21-23 in Indianapolis, Ind.