Freshman Suzanne Bessire still leads the BIG EAST in the 200 freestyle.

Women's Swimming And Diving Closes Out Regular Season At Ball State

Feb. 3, 2012

NOTRE DAME, Ind. – In its final tune-up before the BIG EAST Championships, the Notre Dame women’s swimming and diving team heads to Muncie, Ind., for a Saturday dual meet with Ball State at Lewellen Aquatic Center. The meet gets underway at 1 p.m.

Ball State (7-3) plays host to Southern Illinois on Friday night before the Irish come to town on Saturday. The two battled at Rolfs Aquatic Center last season, with the Irish coming out on top, 175-65. Michigan State proves to be the only common opponent this season, with the Cardinals topping the Spartans, 182-108, while the Irish cruised past MSU, 218-82.

The Irish are coming off a split last weekend at the Shamrock Invitational. Notre Dame defeated Iowa, 201-169, and fell to Ohio State, 214-147. Picking up wins on the weekend were Jenny Chiang (3-Meter Dive), Emma Reaney (200 IM, 200 Breast) and Bridget Casey (200 Fly).

Live results will not be available for the dual meet, but fans can catch a full recap of the meet on Saturday afternoon at


Leading the BIG EAST: Notre Dame currently leads the BIG EAST in eight events. Pacing the Irish is sophomore Kelly Ryan, as she leads the league in the 50 free (23.17), 100 free (49.62), 100 back (53.60) and 200 back (1:55.66) and was a part of the 400 free relay (3:20.93) and the 400 medley relay (3:39.59) teams that currently lead the conference. Reaney leads the 200 IM (1:57.67), while fellow freshman Suzanne Bessire leads in the 200 free (1:49.05).

Looking Nationally: Looking at the national landscape, Ryan is 18th in the 200 back (1:55.66), 29th in the 100 back (53.60) and 42nd in the 100 free (49.62). Reaney is ninth in the 200 IM (1:57.67), 20th in the 400 IM (4:12.19), 25th in the 200 breast (2:12.37) and 28th in the 100 breast (1:01.10). Sophomore Lauren Stauder is 32nd in the 200 breast (2:13.05). The 400 free relay team (3:20.93) composed of Amy Prestinario, Kelly, Reaney and Hannah Bowen sits 24th, the 400 medley relay team (3:39.59) of Ryan, Bessire, Reaney and Prestinario is 20th and the 800 free relay team (7:21.79) composed of Ryan, Bessire, Reaney and Prestinario is 28th.

BIG EAST Weekly Award: Notre Dame has made a habit of winning the BIG EAST Women’s Swimming and Diving Athlete of the Week award this season, with Kelly Ryan becoming the latest Irish swimmer to etch her name on the award. The Irish have now won four times, including three in a row from Dec. 6-Jan. 24. Reaney has been honored three times, while no other school has been honored more than twice. Notre Dame has four of the nine awards that have been handed out this year.

Reaney Impresses: Freshman Emma Reaney has made quite an impact for the Irish this season. The Lawrence, Kan., native is 10-1 in IM events and won six breaststroke and five relay events. For her efforts she has been named BIG EAST Women’s Swimming and Diving Athlete of the Week three times, which is a new league standard for most weekly scrolls in a season. In the Jan. 16 issue of Sports Illustrated, Reaney appeared in Faces In The Crowd. She’s currently the top freshman nationally in the 200 breast and IM events and fourth in the 100 breast and 400 IM events.

Getting Back Into The Swing Of Things: Junior and seven-time BIG EAST champion Kim Holden missed much of the 2011-12 season recovering from offseason surgery, but has returned to her sophomore form quickly. Competing in the last two meets, the Mount Kisco, N.Y., native has earned two second place finishes in the 100 back and a fourth place finish in the 200 back. She also swam the fastest backstroke split (56.07) in the 400 medley relay at the Shamrock Invitational.

Casey Named To USA Swimming National Junior Team: Freshman Bridget Casey entered Notre Dame in impressive fashion, earning a spot on the USA Swimming National Junior Team in the 200 fly this past summer. She qualified for the team after being the fifth 18 and under swimmer to touch the pad at the 2011 ConocoPhillips National Championships in August.

Irish Raise $5,000 Towards Cancer Research: The women’s swimming team held the first annual Fighting Irish Swim Clinic on Saturday, Sept. 24 and raised $5,000 towards cancer research. The money will go towards the American Cancer Society and the local RiverBend Cancer Services.

NCAA B-Cut Times: Nine Notre Dame women’s swimmers have recorded NCAA B-Cut times so far this season.

Suzanne Bessire – 400 and 800 Free Relay
Hannah Bowen – 200 and 400 Free Relay
Bridget Casey – 200 Fly
Amy Prestinario – 100 Free, 200 Medley Relay, 200, 400 and 800 Free Relay
Emma Reaney – 100 and 200 Breast, 200 and 400 IM, 400 Medley Relay,400 and 800 Free Relay
Kelly Ryan – 100 Free, 100 and 200 Back, 400 Medley Relay, 200,400 and 800 Free Relay
Lauren Scott – 200 Free Relay
Lauren Stauder – 200 Breast