Jan. 24, 2001
WHO:The Notre Dame Women’s Swimming and Diving team.
WHAT:Two dual meets against top competition
WHERE:Evanston, Ill., and Notre Dame, Ind.
#18 Notre Dame at #23 Northwestern
Thursday, Jan. 25, 5:00 p.m.
#18 Notre Dame vs. #14 Michigan
Friday, Jan. 26, 4:00 p.m.
Irish will face two of the top teams in the nation this weekend:
The 18th-ranked Notre Dame women’s swimming and diving team (8-1), enters the toughest part of its dual-meet schedule this week as it faces #23 Northwestern in Evanston, Ill., on Thursday, Jan. 25, then comes back home to face #14 Michigan the next day in the Rolfs Aquatic Center. The competition with the Wolverines, previously scheduled at 5 p.m., has been moved forward to 4 p.m.
It will be an exciting weekend of swimming and diving, as the Irish, Wildcats and Wolverines have established quite a rivalry over the last few years.
Notre Dame went undefeated in the 1999-2000 dual meet season (10-0), highlighted by upset victories over #11 Northwestern on Jan. 21, 2000, and #8 Michigan on Jan. 29, 2000. The victory over the Wolverines was the first for Notre Dame in five meetings between the two schools.
The Irish also had a close look at Michigan already this season, as Notre Dame competed in the Wolverine Invitational Jan. 12-13, and swam against the home team, even though the Irish were only scored against the University of Illinois (Notre Dame earned a 200.5-145.5 victory over the Illini).
Irish times among the best in the nation:
Two Notre Dame swimmers have established themselves among the best in the country this season. Junior Kelly Hecking (Rutherford, NJ) and freshman Marie Labosky (Churchville, Pa.) have dominated the competition in their respective strokes and positioned themselves for a possible spot in the NCAA Championships.
Hecking has been close to unbeatable in the backstroke. Out of the 14 backstroke final races in which she has competed, she has won 11, finishing second in the other three. Hecking swept the 100 and 200 backstroke vs. Miami (FL), at the Miami (OH) quad meet, vs. Iowa and in the Notre Dame Invitational. Swimming against Michigan last week (Jan. 12-13), Hecking won the 100 back and finished second in the 200 back and 50 freestyle.
The 55.70 time Hecking posted in the 200 back in the Notre Dame Invitational (Nov. 30-Dec. 2) ranks 15th in the Swimming World top times list this season. Hecking also swam a 2:00.54 in the 200 back at the Notre Dame Invitational. That time ranks 16th in the nation so far this season.
Labosky has been equally dominate in the distance freestyle and individual medley events for the Irish this season. She has posted 13 individual event victories in 2000-01 and three times that are listed among the best in the country.
Labosky’s 1,000 freestyle time of 10:05.00 ranks 23rd, her 16:51.64 in the 1,650 freestyle is 21st and her 400 individual medley time of 4:19.81 is ranked 19th. Swimming against Michigan last week, Labosky won the 200 IM and 400 IM and finished second in the 1,650 freestyle.
Mattingly on a roll:
Junior diver Heather Mattingly (Houston, Texas) will play a key role in both meets this week. Mattingly won both the one- and three-meter diving events at the Wolverine Invitational, competing against the same divers she will see against Michigan on Jan. 26. She has posted top scores of 291.25 in one-meter diving and a school-record 550.55 in three-meter diving.
Mattingly became the first Irish diver to earn honorable mention All-America honors last season and has qualified for the NCAA championship meet in 1999 and 2000.