Oct. 7, 2017
By Leigh Torbin
NOTRE DAME, Ind. – For what is believed to be the first time in school history, the Notre Dame men’s and women’s swimming and diving teams downed a top 10 foe in dual meet action as the No. 17 Notre Dame men beat No. 7 Louisville, 153.5-146.5, while the No. 25 Irish women beat the ninth-ranked Cardinals, 181.5-118.5, on Saturday afternoon.
Sophomore Abbie Dolan won the 50, 100 and 200 freestyle events, while also adding a leg to the champion 400 freestyle relay team, to help guide the Notre Dame women to victory. Dolan’s wins in the 100 and 200 freestyle came impressive over tight competition from Louisville’s Mallory Comerford, a gold medalist at the 2017 FINA World Championships.
Freshman Zachary Yeadon broke a pair of Rolfs Aquatic Center records in his collegiate dual meet debut, winning the 500 and 1000 freestyle in the process.
Other Irish individual double-event winners against the Cardinals were Justin Plaschka (50 freestyle and 100 butterfly), Lindsay Stone (500 and 1000 freestyle) and Rob Whitacre (100 and 200 backstroke). “Obviously this is a great win for both of our programs,” Irish head coach Mike Litzinger said. “I’m truly happy with the total team effort that both groups put in. While there were some shining individual moments, the reality of it is our group works very hard. They rely on each other. Today was a perfect example of true team swimming.”
Olympian Marks Tumble
Making the freshman’s feats all the more noteworthy, Zachary Yeadon’s pair of Rolfs records were hardly established at the expense of run-of-the-mill swimmers of yesteryear.
By swimming a 9:02.47 in the 1000 freestyle, Yeadon topped a 9:02.50 swam by Connor Jaeger of Michigan in 2013. Jaeger represented the United States in both the 2012 and 2016 Olympic Games, winning silver in Rio in the 1500 meters.
With a 4:21.66 in the 500 freestyle, Yeadon beat out the pool record of 4:21.98 which had been set by Denver’s Blake Worsley in 2009. Worsley represented his native Canada in the 2012 Olympics in London.
Notre Dame swimmers and divers claimed the following event titles on Saturday afternoon, winning 20 of the 32 events:
– Women’s 200 medley relay (1:41.14) – Carly Quast, Meaghan O’Donnell, Erin Sheehan and Fonseca Revilak
– Women’s 1000 freestyle (9:51.48) – Lindsay Stone
– Men’s 1000 freestyle (9:02.47) – Zachary Yeadon
– Women’s 200 freestyle (1:46.12) – Abbie Dolan
– Men’s 200 freestyle (1:38.78) – Tabahn Afrik
– Women’s 100 backstroke (54.68) – Carly Quast
– Men’s 100 backstroke (48.27) – Rob Whitacre
– Women’s 100 breaststroke (1:02.99) – Meaghan O’Donnell
– Women’s 50 freestyle (22.98) – Abbie Dolan
– Men’s 50 freestyle (20.04) – Justin Plaschka
– Women’s 3-meter diving (294.38) – Kelly Straub
– Women’s 100 freestyle (48.94) – Abbie Dolan
– Women’s 200 backstroke (1:56.49) – Alice Treuth
– Men’s 200 backstroke (1:45.58) – Rob Whitacre
– Women’s 500 freestyle (4:50.07) – Lindsay Stone
– Men’s 500 freestyle (4:21.66) – Zachary Yeadon
– Women’s 100 butterfly (54.34) – Erin Sheehan
– Men’s 100 butterfly (47.91) – Justin Plaschka
– Men’s 200 IM (1:49.58) – Nick Milikich
– Women’s 400 freestyle relay (3:20.49) – Abbie Dolan, Rachel Wittmer, Lauren Heller and Fonseca Revilak
Coach Litzinger Says
On the freshman class that accounted for six individual event wins on Saturday:
“Our team has some really good experience at the top end, but we are recruiting very well and that showed by the freshman performances. I think our future is very strong. To swim against teams like Louisville and, next week, Texas A&M and Michigan State, then down the road Indiana and others, I think we’re going to continue to be tested. This is just one meet. Now we need to run through the rest of the year with the priorities being NCAAs and ACCs.”
A five-meet homestand to open the 2017-18 season will continue on Friday for the Irish as Notre Dame plays host to Michigan State and No. 15/5 Texas A&M at 5 p.m. in the Rolfs Aquatic Center. The Aggies will stick around for a dual-meet against the Irish at 11 a.m. on Saturday.
Leigh Torbin, athletics communications assistant director at the University of Notre Dame, has been part of the Fighting Irish athletics communications team since 2013. A native of Framingham, Massachusetts, Torbin graduated from the University of Massachusetts in 1998 with a bachelor’s degree in sports management. He has previously worked full-time on the athletic communications staffs at Vanderbilt, Florida, Connecticut and UCF.