Manu Bacarizo Goes 48.9/1:45.9 in Backstroke Wins as NU Beats UIC, Illinois


  • October 12th, 2019
  • Evanston, IL
  • Results


  • Northwestern 218, UIC 81
  • Northwestern 192, Illinois 107
  • Illinois 207, UIC 92

Despite their top eight swimmers down in Texas racing at the SMU Classic, the Northwestern women got the job done.

Junior Sophie Angus swept the breaststrokes (1:04.71 in the 100, 2:20.04 in the 200), while senior Nicole Aarts took the win in the 100 back (55.91). Angus had a nice 28.22 split on the 200 medley relay A, which won in 1:43.06, as she out-split the rest of the breaststrokers in the field by well over a full second.

It was the freshmen who really made their mark for NU, though. First, Yulia Groysman posted a 10:20.21 to win the 1000 free, followed by Ally Larson in the 200 fly (2:02.08) and Emma Lepisova in the 200 back (2:01.27). Aarts was second in the 200 back (2:01.95). Groysman won the 500 free, too, going 5:03.92 there. First-year Roza Erdemli took the 100 fly (55.93), and was 51.91 on the third leg of NU’s winning 400 free relay (3:31.29).

Illinois won a few events, led by double winner Kristin Anderson, who took the 50 free (23.57) and 100 free (51.90). Abby Cabush won the 200 free in a very tight race with NU’s Larson; Cabush was 1:52.31, while Larson was 1:52.72. Illinois diver Taylor Shegos also won the 1-meter diving, scoring 278.80.

UIC found a win with Cyndey Liebenberg scoring 263.55 on the 3-meter.


  • Northwestern 210, UIC 83

Manu Bacarizo was exceptional in the backstroke races, going 48.93 to take the 100 back and then turning around for a 1:45.90 in the 200 back, dominating the latter by over five seconds. Bacarizo was also 23.03 leading off NU’s winning 200 medley relay, which touched in 1:31.03.

NU’s B relay breaststroker, freshman Kai Tik Mok, was 25.69 and outsplit their A relay breaststroker. Mok would go on to win the 100 breast (56.35) and the 200 breast (2:02.85). Freshman Ben Miller earned his first collegiate win with a 1:49.65 in the 200 fly, his best event. Later, in the 100 fly, he was 50.04 to win that race.

Junior Liam Gately and freshman Ben Forbes excelled in the 200 free, with Forbes taking the win 1:39.83 to 1:39.99. In the 500 free, Gately was third (4:37.45) and Forbes fourth (4:43.21). Winning that race was DJ Hwang (4:31.91) ahead of another freshman, Ryan King (4:34.66). Hwang won the 1000 in the meet’s first individual race, going 9:18.36 ahead of King’s 9:23.93.

Another double winner for NU was Andrew Zhang, who took the 50 free (21.03) and 100 free (45.59). He was 20.10 anchoring NU’s A 200 medley relay.

Zhang (45.09) and Gately (45.14) had the field’s best splits as NU went 1-2 in the 400 free relay; NU’s A won in 3:03.25. The Wildcats won every event, adding diving wins from Yohan Eskrick-Parkins on 3-meter (334.30) and Evan Labuda on 1-meter (292.45).

Notably, freshmen with anticipated collegiate debuts, Federico Burdisso and Kevin Houseman, were no-shows for the Wildcats. Burdisso is currently in Berlin, racing at the FINA World Cup; both men are on the roster, though.

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About Karl Ortegon

Karl Ortegon

Karl Ortegon studied sociology at Wesleyan University in Middletown, CT, graduating in May of 2018. He began swimming on a club team in first grade and swam four years for Wesleyan.

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