EAST LANSING, Mich. – In their third weekend of back-to-back meets on Friday and Saturday, the Michigan State women’s swimming and diving team bounced back from a loss last night at home to Michigan by winning at Oakland University. The women claimed the victory with a score of 173 – 125, while the men fell to the Golden Grizzles 177-121.
“There were great performances on both sides,” said head coach Matt Gianiodis. “On the women’s side, it was very balanced. Multiple kids had wins in the individual events, so that was exciting. Bryan (Williams) really headlined the guys winning four events. Nick Roberts had a good meet, too. I’m really happy with them because it was probably one of the most balanced meets we’ve ever had and everyone really contributed a lot.”
The Spartans were sparked by a win in the 200 medley relay to kick off the meet. The team of senior Lauren Baisden, freshman Michelle Garland, senior Jenny Rusch and junior Summer Strickler took first-place honors with a time of 1:45.62.
In the 1,000 freestyle, sophomore Becca Berman (10:27.92) and freshman Chelsea Abbott (10:32.15) finished second and third, respectively. Baisden finished second in the 200 backstroke, stopping the clock in 2:03.60.
Strickler clocked in a time of 1:54.50 in the 200 freestyle to claim second-place points for the Spartans. In the 50 freestyle, Rusch finished in first-place for the second-straight meet with a time of 23.59. Strickler and Rusch later took first and second-place points in the 100 freestyle with Strickler winning the event in 52.02, while Rusch finished second with a time of 52.09.
Michigan State gave Oakland a one-two punch in the 100 breaststroke as Garland won the event in a time of 1:06.64 and freshman Marina Borri posted a time of 1:06.77 to take second-place honors.
The freshman repeated in the 200 breaststroke, this time with Borri taking the win with a time of 2:21.89 and Garland placing second with a time of 2:23.30.
The Spartans continued success as freshman Elizabeth Brown another title in the 200 butterfly with a time of 2:04.35, while sophomore Hannah Pugh stopped the clock in a season-best time of 2:05.93 to finish second. Brown also brought home a win in the 100 butterfly, posting a time of 57.42
In the 500 freestyle, Pugh swam for a time of 5:07.09 and Abbott clocked in at 5:10.46 to place fourth.
The women went one, two and three in the 200 individual medley. Garland (2:07.90) took first place, Brown (2:09.09) placed second and senior Alexandra Pierce (2:09.30) finished third.
MSU concluded the night with a win in the 400 freestyle relay. The victorious team of Rusch, sophomore Taylor Folkerstma, senior Tori Merritt and Strickler stopped the clock in 3:30.31.
On the boards, the women finished second through fourth on the 1-meter and 3-meter with sophomore Alison Menzies (266.17) taking second, junior Cristee Cordes (252.90) finishing third and freshman Taylor Mullahy (237.15) placed fourth.
The men’s 200 medley relay team of junior Sam Schulze, freshman Ian Rodriguez, senior Jacob Jarzen and freshman Eric Chisholm finished second, stopping the clock in 1:31.78.
Jarzen later went 1:47.67 to place second in the 200 backstroke, while teammate Drew Goins finished third with a time of 1:53.61.
Junior Jake Austermann (9:46.81) and sophomore David Zoltowski (9:50.41) finished second and third, respectively, in the 1,000 freestyle.
In the 200 freestyle, junior Bryan Williams posted a season-best time of 1:38.92 to claim an individual win. He took another win in the 200 butterfly with a time of 1:49.87.
The Spartans took second through fourth-place points away from Oakland as Jarzen placed second with a time of 49.79, Rodriguez finished third with a time of 51.96 and Schulze clocked in at 52.02 for fourth place.
Junior Nick Roberts stopped the clock for a career-best time of 57.75 in the 100 breaststroke, but came up just short to finish second in the event. He later swam a time of 2:06.64 to finish second in the 200 breaststroke, while freshman Nate Weeks placed third in the event with a time of 2:10.31.
The men made a big push to come back with a one-two punch in the 100 butterfly as Williams posted a time of 48.64 to claim first-place honors, while Jarzen finished second with a time of 49.32.
Michigan State also made a late run with a win in the 200 freestyle relay. The team of Williams, junior Pat Falconer, junior Nick McGowan and sophomore Kyle Workman posted a time of 3:01.81 for the win.
After a weekend off, the Michigan State men’s team will host the Wolverine men as Michigan comes back to East Lansing on Saturday, Feb 9. The meet marks the last of the regular season before Big Ten Championships. The women will take on conference foes in Minneapolis, Minn., on Feb. 20-23, while the men will compete in Bloomington, Ind., from Feb. 27-March 3.