Jan. 26, 2008
NOTRE DAME, Ind. – The Notre Dame women’s swimming and diving squad wrapped up the 2007-08 regular season schedule with a win at the Shamrock Invitational, beating out BIG EAST rival West Virginia at the Rolfs Aquatic Center on Saturday.
On a day that recognized the eight seniors of this season’s team, the Irish took control of the lead early on in the competition to finish the meet with a dominating score of 249-116 over the Mountaineers. Notre Dame’s record improved to 4-7 to finish out the campaign and leaves the Irish with confidence as they head into the BIG EAST Championship.
“I think this was our chance today to fine tune some things,” head coach Carrie Nixon said. “We worked on our turn technique, our stroke technique and some pacing. It was one last run through before the championship.
“I’m really proud of our seniors today and I’m really proud of our team. I think this has been a really rough dual-meet season for us. There were a lot of ups and downs, some really high points and some very low points. They did a great job going out with a bang and you always want to end on a high note.”
Out of the 20 women’s events, the Irish stunned the Mountaineers as they earned 17 victories. Thirteen of those wins came in individual events, with Notre Dame athletes taking multiple top spots.
In the women’s 200 freestyle the trio of Christa Riggins, Lauren Sylvester and Casey Wagner stormed through the competition as they finished in the top three spots. Riggins took the title with a time of 1:50.36, while teammates Sylvester and Wagner followed in hot pursuit with respective times of 1:53.25 and 1:53.30 for the second and third places.
In the next event, Notre Dame once again saw a threesome stun the field with top spots in the 100 breaststroke. Sam Maxwell won the race with a time of 1:02.61, her fourth consecutive win in the event. Amywren Miller took second with a time of 1:05.10 and teammate Lizzie Gormley finished in the three spot with a time of 1:07.03.
It was total control in the diving events as the Irish swept the top spots in both the 1 and 3-meter. Natalie Stitt was victorious in both events with stunning performances, scoring 306.89 in the 1-meter and 315.00 in the 3-meter. Teammate Heidi Grossman took second behind Stitt in both events with scores of 276.60 (1-meter) and 295.21 (3-meter).
The Irish return to the pool when they travel to the Nassau County Aquatic Center in East Meadow, N.Y., for the BIG EAST Championship. Notre Dame has won 11 consecutive BIG EAST titles and will look to earn a 12th when they compete on Feb. 20-23.