Jan. 29, 2016
By Lizzie Mikes
NOTRE DAME, Ind. – The University of Notre Dame men’s and women’s swimming and diving teams had several top performances Friday night, in the first of three sessions in the Shamrock Invitational.
“On the women’s side, we’re swimming as well as we did at our fall invitational at Purdue; and that’s a great sign,” head coach Mike Litzinger said. “The women are right on track in our training, and we’re starting to get really sharp – their ACC meet is a week in front of the men. The women certainly delivered today with some season best times, and our relays were really well put together. I’m pretty pleased with the women, and in diving we swept one-two-three – that was a really nice performance for them.
“On the guys’ side, we’re in a little bit of a different spot,” Litzinger continued. “We’re racing really hard, but our training is about a week behind the women so our guys feel fast, but in reality we’re not ready to go guns a-blazing yet. There’s a lot of things that we need to correct; I’ve only been working with the men’s team about two months, but they’re doing a great job, and their hearts are into it. We’ve just got to get a little bit better if we want to do something special at the ACCs.”
In addition to sweeping in diving (Emma Gaboury scored 284.65, Lindsey Streepey 276.30 and Annie Crea took 275.30), the women took first through third in the 500 free as well. Ella Moynihan had the top time (4:55.07), followed by Alice Treuth (4:59.30) and Molly Treble (5:01.53). They also finished first in the 200 free relay and the 400 medley relay.
On the men’s side, the A team of Justin Plaschka, Tabahn Afrik, Reed Fujan and Daniel Speers took second in the 200 free relay (1:21.25) and third in the 400 medley relay; Bogac Ayhan, Andrew Jensen, Matthew Grauslys and Afrik clocked in at 3:20.20. The Irish had 11 etrants in the 200 IM, with Kevin Bradley earning the top finish in fifth place (1:51.48).
“I think we talked all week long about swimming for the seniors, and making their last home experience a great one,” Litzinger stated. “I don’t think there’s any doubt that there will be some emotion amongst the teams in terms of a last swim at Rolfs, but I think it will be business as usual; we’re here to compete, we’re here to swim fast, and our seniors have done that tonight and will continue to do so tomorrow.”
The Saturday morning session kicks off at 10 a.m. ET, with diving beginning at 1 p.m. Seniors will be honored approximately at 3:45 p.m., before the last heat of the 1650 free begins.
— ND —
Lizzie Mikes serves as Media Services Coordinator at the University of Notre Dame. A 2013 graduate of Johnson & Wales University, she oversees credential management and is the athletic communications director for Fighting Irish men’s and women’s swimming and diving. She has assisted with numerous NCAA postseason events hosted by Notre Dame, and is heavily involved in the day-to-day tasks of the athletic communications office.