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Notre Dame Defeats Iowa and Illinois, Illini Nearly Upset Hawkeyes


  • January 11, 2018
  • Champaign, IL
  • Results
  • Scores
    • ND 200, Illinois 100
    • ND 204, Iowa 95
    • Iowa 157, Illinois 143

Iowa and Notre Dame traveled to Champaign, Illinois, to take on the Fighting Illini in a women-only meet this afternoon. Notre Dame picked up big wins over both teams, while the Hawkeyes came away with a win in a very close meet with Illinois.

Things got off to a bit of an odd start, as Illinois powered to a win in the 200 medley relay, with Notre Dame’s A and B relays taking 2nd and 3rd and Iowa’s A relay placing 4th. Illinois’ season best is a 1:42.11, which was done with tech suits at their November mid-season invite meet, while ND has consistently hit 1:40’s and 1:41’s with practice suits during dual meets.

This result has to do with three of ND’s normal A relay legs, breaststroker Meaghan O’Donnell, flyer Cailey Grunhard, and freestyler Abigail Dolan all not competing today. Only Carly Quast of their typical A relay lineup was racing today, with freshman Sarah Nicholls filling in on breast, followed by Erin Sheehan on fly and Sofia Revilak anchoring.

In any case, Illinois had a fantastic relay. With their previous in-season best being a 1:46.28 from October, they put together a strong 1:44.85 performance and earned their win in a big upset, with ND’s A touching at 1:45.22 and their B at 1:45.67.

Notre Dame snapped back, winning the next three events. Lindsay Stone broke 10:00 in the 1000 free for the Fighting Irish, clocking a 9:58.17, and she was back later to win the 500 free, too (4:52.33). Sinead Eksteen was 1:51.53, edging out Illinois freshman Abby Cabush (1:52.04), with the 100 back being a 1-2 ND sweep thanks to Quast (55.58) and Bayley Stewart (55.89).

Taking advantage of O’Donnell’s absence, Illinois went 1-2 in the 100 breast, led by Gabriele Serniute (1:05.03) and Ilse Martinez (1:05.40). ND took the next two events, though, with Luciana Thomas going 2:00.53 in the 200 fly and Lauren Heller clocking a 23.65 in the 50 free. Heller came out of the diving break to claim the 100 free, too, in 51.19.

Alice Treuth won the 200 back for ND in 1:58.02, before Martinez took the 200 breast for Illinois (2:20.58) with Iowa’s Devin Jacobs touching 2nd (2:22.74). Martinez was clutch again in the 200 IM, winning it at 2:05.67, as Iowa’s Kelsey Drake placed 2nd (2:06.44). Drake was also 2nd in the 100 fly (55.31) behind ND’s Sheehan (54.82).

The Irish just got past Iowa in the 400 free relay, 3:26.16 to 3:26.98, with Illinois touching 3rd in 3:30.06 and coming up just short of knocking off Iowa.

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