LSU gymnastics team looks to keep momentum going at Auburn

AUBURN, Ala. — The sixth-ranked LSU gymnastics team will try to finish 4-0 in February when the Tigers take on No. 14 Auburn at 7 p.m. Friday in Auburn Arena.

LSU (8-2, 4-1 Southeastern) earned wins at Kentucky, at Missouri and home against Arkansas this month, and the Tigers face off against an Auburn squad that has posted four straight 196 scores.

LSU has been solid on the road this year, topping the 197 mark twice, including a season-high 197.275 at Missouri on Feb. 8 that is the best road score for the Tigers since 2005.

LSU has also registered a perfect 10 in back-to-back meets with Lloimincia Hall on floor at Missouri and Sarie Morrison on vault against Arkansas, the first time the Tigers have earned a 10 in two straight meets since 2004.

The Tigers enter fresh off a 196.825 in a win against Arkansas. Ranked No. 2 nationally on vault and floor, LSU lived up to the billing against the Razorbacks with a 49.425 on floor and 49.400 on vault; the Tigers added a 49.325 on bars.

LSU leads the all-time series against Auburn 65-13, including a 10-5 mark on the Plains, but LSU is searching for its first win at Auburn since 2007.

Swimming and diving

THIRD DAY OF SEC MEET COMPLETE: In College Station, Texas, the swimming and diving team performed well in the evening session of the third day of competition and scored key points at the Southeastern Conference Championships.

After three days, LSU’s men sit in sixth place with 353.5 points and trail Tennessee and Texas A&M by less than 70 points. Florida is first with 748 points.

The Lady Tigers are tied for sixth with Missouri and have 297 points. Georgia is in first with 790.

Junior Sean McKinney excelled in his first career championship final at the conference championships and nailed every dive on his three-meter list. The Springfield, Va., native totaled a score of 391.40, the second highest score of his career, and finished fourth.

Senior Craig Hamilton grabbed fourth in the consolation final of the 200 free with a time of 1:36.59. The Edinburgh, Scotland, native’s time was LSU’s fourth best all-time mark and was good for an NCAA “B” cut. The 200 free was one of the stronger races of the day, with 29 competitors earning NCAA provisional marks.

Sophomore Frank Greeff swam a strong 100 fly time of 47.16 and clinched fifth in the consolation final. The South Africa native’s 100 fly mark was the program’s third best all-time mark and an NCAA “B” cut.

Greeff also took third in the “C” final of the 200 free with a time of 1:37.21. Greeff swam LSU’s third best all-time 200 free (1:36.48) in a leadoff split on Tuesday’s 800 free relay and has already earned an NCAA provisional cut.

Sophomore Amber Carter raced to third in the “C” final of the 100 fly with LSU’s eighth best all-time mark of 53.85. Senior Sara Haley picked up a time of 54.08 in the “C” final. Both marks were NCAA “B” cuts.

Freshman Danielle Stirrat picked up LSU’s third fastest all-time 200 free time of 1:47.12 in a third place finish in the “C” final. Stirrat’s swim was an NCAA “B” cut.

Senior Sally Wood registered a 400 individual medley mark of 4:17.43 in a fifth place finish in the “C” final, which gave her an NCAA “B” cut. Junior Kaelee Mader cranked out a season low in the 400 IM (4:21.48) en route to winning the first heat and earning the position of first alternate.

In the morning session, junior Shane Coltharp posted LSU’s sixth best all-time 400 individual medley time of 3:55.49. Coltharp’s new career low was more than 2.5 seconds faster than his previous best.

Sophomore Dillon Love notched LSU’s 10th best all-time 200 free (1:38.16). Freshman Gabe Rooker (1:39.79) and sophomore Michael Schaefer (1:40.96) posted career lows in the 200 free.

Junior Rainey White was the first alternate of the 100 fly after a time of 54.68. Freshman Caley Oquist carved out a career low of 55.76 to take second in the first heat of the 100 fly. Freshman Megan Cox had a personal best 200 free time of 1:49.12.

Men’s tennis

NO. 24 TIGERS TO HOST TEXAS TECH: The Tigers host the Red Raiders at 3 p.m. Friday at W.T. “Dub” Robinson Stadium.

The Tigers (4-1) are 3-1 all-time against the Red Raiders (5-3), with Texas Tech winning their last meeting 4-0 in January 2011.

Neither team has a ranked singles player, but LSU is led by the No. 35 duo of Chris Simpson and Stefan Szacinski in doubles. Texas Tech also does not have a ranked doubles pair.