PENN STATE V. IOWA V. NORTHWESTERN
- January 22-23, 2021
- Evanston, IL
- Short course yards (SCY)
Penn State and Iowa came to Evanston this weekend to take on the Northwestern Wildcats, with the 200 medley relay, the 1000 free and diving contested Friday evening and the rest on Saturday. Penn State was missing a big chunk of their roster on both the men’s and women’s sides, including many of their top swimmers.
- Northwestern 242, Penn State 58
- Northwestern 225, Iowa 75
- Penn State 153, Iowa 146
The Northwestern women cruised past Penn State and Iowa, the meet highlighted by senior Sophie Angus taking out her own school record in the 100 breast. Angus went 58.92 today, slicing .04 off of her program mark from last season, which moves her to the #4 slot in the country this season.
Finishing second to Angus was Wildcat sophomore Hannah Brunzell (59.46), just a couple tenths off of her best, as she jumps to #12 in the nation. Angus and Brunzell both broke 27 swimming breast on the NU A and B 200 medley relays, Angus splitting a 26.75 and Brunzell a 26.93, as NU went 1-2 in the 200 medley with times of 1:38.02 and 1:38.83. Senior Maddie Smith had a big 23.45 fly split on the A relay.
Brunzell won the 200 breast on the latter portion of Saturday’s meet, again coming just off of her best with a 2:08.89 as Angus touched second (2:12.42) ahead of another Wildcat, Tara Vovk (2:12.53). Brunzell’s time puts her at #16 nationally.
Smith had a huge day for the Wildcats, too. After winning the 50 free (22.45) and 100 free (49.34), she saved her biggest swim for last, busting out a 48.24 to lead off Northwestern’s winning 400 free relay at the end of the meet. That’s her first best time in the 100 free since 2017, and it’s also her first time under 49– she nearly went under 48, too.
Junior Miriam Guevara and sophomore Emma Lepisova were two more double winners for the Wildcats, who gave up only one event the entire meet. Guevara slammed down a 52.24 in the 100 fly and a 1:55.73 in the 200 fly, while Lepisova swept the backstrokes, going 53.19 in the 100 and 1:55.82 in the 200. Ilektra Lebl, another senior, added a win in the 400 IM (4:15.95).
Freshmen Annika Wagner and Lola Mull picked up a win each for the Wildcats as well. Wagner was 1:47.97 in the 200 free, while Mull posted a 4:49.49 in the 500 free. On the boards, Jaye Patrick took the 1-meter (294.80) and Markie Hopkins the 3-meter (328.45) for NU.
The sole non-Northwestern victor this weekend was Iowa freshman Alyssa Graves, who threw down a 9:48.33 in the 1000 free to deny Mull (9:54.61) and Lebl (9:55.57). Graves also finished runner-up in the 200 fly (2:00.19) and 500 free (4:50.21). Penn State got a second-place finish with Brooke Matthias in the 100 fly (54.10), while Elisabeth Gaspari had a nice 22.21 medley relay anchor and split 49.97 on Penn State’s 400 free relay. The Nittany Lions were missing many of their top sprinters today.
- Northwestern 247, Penn State 53
- Northwestern 183, Iowa 117
- Iowa 206, Penn State 94
Northwestern sophomore Kevin Houseman unloaded the nation’s #3 time this season in the 100 breaststroke today, blasting a 51.79 for his first sub-52 performance ever. Houseman’s previous best was a 52.00 from last year. Only Texas A&M’s Tanner Olson (51.39) and Minnesota’s Max McHugh (50.63) have been quicker this year. With that swim, Houseman also rattled the NU program record, a 51.56 by Mike Alexandrov way back in 2007. Sophomore Marcus Mok nabbed the 200 breast win, going 1:55.83.
Manu Bacarizo picked up the backstroke sweep for the Wildcats, clocking a 46.74 in the 100 back and 1:41.84 in the 200. He’s now #12 nationally in the 200 and #17 in the 100. Also earning individual wins for NU were senior DJ Hwang in the 1000 free (9:08.50) and Dartmouth transfer Connor LaMastra in the 200 fly (1:45.48).
Iowa had a bunch of strong swims, starting off this morning with a big 1-2 in the 200 free from Mateusz Arndt (1:36.20) and Andrew Fierke (1:36.80). Aleksey Tarasenko swept the sprint free for the Hawkeyes (20.07/43.70), and then Arndt (4:22.05) and Fierke (4:26.25) punched another 1-2 in the 500 free.
The Hawkeyes carried that 500 free momentum into the final two individual events, as Sergey Kuznetsov picked up the 100 fly (47.70) and Anze Fers Erzen claimed the 400 IM (3:47.95).
Northwestern ended the meet on top, clocking a 2:56.12 to edge Iowa with a come-from-behind anchor by senior Liam Gately (43.93). Tarasenko had a big 43.54 lead-off for Iowa, and NU junior Andrew Zhang had the field’s best split at 43.51. Zhang also had the best 200 medley relay anchor (19.43).
Penn State was missing a large portion of their roster, including most (if not all) of their top swimmers.