FORT MYERS, Fla. – The FGCU Swimming and Diving team used eight first-place finishes, highlighted by senior Eva Lehtonen’s (Rochester Hills, Mich./Rochester Adams HS/Florida) four first-place finishes, to defeat ACC foe Georgia Tech, 161-139, in a tri-meet with Virginia Tech on Saturday afternoon at Georgia Tech. In the first-ever meeting, Virginia Tech defeated the Eagles, 175-125.
The win is FGCU’s first over Georgia Tech and its second against a school from the ACC this season. The Eagles defeated the University of Miami earlier this year on two different occasions.
“The girls were awesome today and really stepped up as we defeated Georgia Tech for the first time in program history,” said head coach Neal Studd. “We had some outstanding swims from Eva Lehtonen, Julie Leth-Espensen, Jennifer Morgan, Emma Svensson, Megan Wolfe and Danielle Beaubrun. We won relays over both schools and several individual events. We knew Virginia Tech was very deep, but we competed really well with them. I am delighted with our big win today.”
Lehtonen’s first victory came in the 200-yard freestyle when she finished first with a time of 1:50.77. Her second first-place finish came in the 200-yard fly when she touched in a time of 2:04.26. Lehtonen’s final individual first-place finish came in the 500-yard freestyle with a time of 5:02.88. She was also a part of the relay team that consisted of sophomore Emma Svensson (Upsala, Sweden/Celsiusskolan), senior Megan Wolfe (Sebring, Fla./Sebring HS/Daytona State College) and freshman Jennifer Morgan (Edmonton, Alberta/Harry Ainlay), who took first place in the 200-yard freestyle relay with a time of 1:34.17.
Morgan also added a first-place finish in the 200-yard backstroke with a time of 2:02.23 and a second-place finish in the 100-yard backstroke (57.57).
Freshman Julie Leth-Espensen (Vanloese, Copenhagen, Denmark) was also a top performer, taking first in both the 200-yard breaststroke and 400-yard IM. Leth-Espensen finished with a time of 2:18.70 in the breaststroke and 4:26.93 in the IM. She also took third in the 100-yard breaststroke with a time of 1:05.11.
Senior Danielle Beaubrun (Vieux Fort, St. Lucia/Bolles School) added another first-place finish for FGCU in the 100-yard breaststroke event with her time of 1:04.18.
Svensson added a second-place finish for the Eagles in the 50-yard freestyle with her time of 23.77.
Junior Jessie Porter (Chorleywood, Hertforshire, United Kingdom/ Royal Masonic) recorded a third-place finish in the 1650-yard freestyle event with a time of 17:32.28.
In diving, senior Maegan Butler (Orangeburg, N.Y./Tappan Zee/FAU) collected sixth-place finishes on the one-meter and three-meter board events with scores of 220.75 and 234.40.
The Eagles will have a few weeks off before they travel back to Atlanta, Ga. to compete in the Georgia Tech Invitational. The invite will be a three-day event and run from Friday, Nov. 30 - Sunday, Dec. 2.