WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. — The first annual ACC/Big Ten Challenge came to an end Sunday, November 11, with the Big Ten claiming both the men’s and women’s titles. The two conferences came together to compete in an all-star challenge, with the top student-athletes from each team filling the rosters. The Irish had nine members selected to the Atlantic Coast Conference team as well as head coach Mike Litzinger and head diving coach Caiming Xie chosen to lead the pack.
Marci Barta earned the first medal of night one for the Irish swimmers, taking bronze in the 400 IM with a time of 3:45.95. Zach Yeadon followed that up with silver in the 500 free, recording a time of 4:13.68 and an NCAA B cut.
To wrap day one, the teams raced an 800 free relay in which Abbie Dolan represented the Irish and the ACC for the women and Zach Yeadon was out there for the men. Both the men’s and women’s ACC teams took second in the event.
Kelly Straub, the lone Irish diver at the meet, competed in the platform diving on night one of competition. She tallied 228.80 points in her first series of platform dives this season.
Day two featured multiple Irish swimmers earn NCAA B cuts as Abbie Dolan, Carly Quast and Nikki Smith post B cut times. Dolan touched the wall for the 200 free in 1:45.61 while Quast earned hers in the 100 back (53.93). Smith followed Quast’s NCAA cut with her own in the 200 fly, finishing in 1:58.86.
The men’s side saw two more medals on day two of the meet, as Zach Yeadon swam the 1,000 free in 8:51.97, making it the second best time in program history behind his own personal best of 8:51.16 set last season. Marci Barta then took bronze in the 200 IM, recording a time of 1:46.79 which breaks him into the Irish top-10 all-time in the event, placing him eighth in program history.
The two-day meet concluded with the 400 free relay in which Abbie Dolan and her ACC teammates took second overall with a time of 3:12.25. Aaron Schultz competed in the final event, earning fourth in 2:56.12.
The Irish return to action next weekend as they travel to Columbus, Ohio for the annual Ohio State Fall Invitational. The meet begins Friday and 10 a.m. and will continue into Staurday, starting again at 10 a.m. It will be the team’s final contest of 2018.