With five athletes winning multiple individual events, the Purdue Boilermakers swept the Michigan State Spartans in a Big Ten conference showdown. The Purdue women, ranked #19 in our midseason power rankings, took 14 of 16 events to top the Spartans 167-125, while the Boilermaker men won 13 of 16 to win 187.5-112.5.
Behind double-winners Carly Mercer, Meagan Lim, and Michelle Cabassol, the Purdue women pulled away early, despite designating a number of their top swimmers throughout the meet. In addition to sweeping the relays, the Boilermakers had the top two performances in nine different individual events.
After an opening win in the 200 medley from Hannah Manger, Francesca Marr, Kylie Vogel, and Carly Mercer, Purdue finished 1-2 in the 1000 freestyle, with Allie Davis finishing just shy of the 10:00 barrier. Her final time of 10:00.34 was a personal best, and more than a full pool-length ahead of second place teammate Lizzy Lyon (10:17.39).
The Boilermakers continued to pile on the Spartans in the next two events, with Nika-Karlina Petric (1:51.10), Marr (1:51.72), and Lyon (1:52.14, impressive immediately after her 1000) recording the three fastest times in the field in the 200 freestyle, and Vogel, Mercer, and Stephanie Schlobohm sweeping the 100 back.
Shelby Lacy helped Michigan State make a dent in the point deficit, earning an individual win in the 100 breast, touching in a final time of 1:05.28, just over a second ahead of teammate Kennedy Cutler, who finished in 1:06.64.
Purdue bounced back to win the next three events, with Meagan Lim pulling away to win the 200 fly, Mercer in the 50 free, and Cabassol in the 3-meter diving. All three athletes later came back to win another individual event later in the meet. Grace Hernandez (500 free) and Hannah Manger (200 back) also won races for the Boilermakers.
The Spartans managed just one other top finish: senior Summer Stickler clocked a 51.94 in the 100 free to finish nearly a half-second ahead of the field.
Like their female teammates, the Purdue men put this meet away convincingly with 1-2 finishes in four of five freestyle events, 1-2-3 sweeps in both diving events, and the top times in both relay events.
In the opening individual event, Luke Trimmer posted a school season-best in the 1650, touching in 15:37.71 for the win, over 13 seconds ahead of second place teammate Nathan Hopkins. Guillermo Blanco (100 fly winner, second in the 100 back), Francesca Marr (200 breast winner, second in the 200 free), Nika Karlina Petric (200 free winner, second in the 200 back), Davis (second in the 100 free) and Mercer (two wins, second in the 100 back) each had an event victory and a second-place showing.
The Boilermakers continued to get big contributions from their strong freshman class. Filip Bujoczek of Poland won the 200 free in 1:40.94, Michigan-native Josh Ehrman took the 200 IM in 1:53.02, and Austin Flager grabbed second places in both sprint freestyle events, behind only senior star sprinter Danny Tucker.
Tucker looked strong for the Boilermakers, anchoring both winning Purdue relays in 19.9 and 44.5, and also winning the open 50 free in 20.52. The U.S. Open champion last summer, Tucker is on track to be the top swimming scoring option for the Boilermakers at NCAA’s.
Junior breaststroker Lyam Dias was also a double individual “winner”, finishing with the top time in the 100 (56.34) and 200 breaststrokes (2:04.02, though this was exhibitioned). Dias is Purdue’s next best swimming threat to score at NCAA’s; he’s currently ranked in the top 20 nationally in both breaststrokes.
The best race of the day, however, was the 500 freestyle, where, after early contender Jonathon Burke faded, Purdue teammates Manuel Gutierrez and Jan Petric battled over the final 100 yards for the win. Gutierrez rallied for the win the event, outsplitting Petric by over a second on the last four lengths.
The Spartans took home three wins on the day, including a pair by senior Bryan Williams, who finished in 49.10 in the 100 butterfly, and 1:50.42 in the 200 fly. In addition, freshman Sam Hiller came away with a victory in the 200 backstroke, touching in 1:52.40.
A nine-person subset of the Purdue men’s team will be back in action next weekend at the SMU Classic. The Purdue women are idle until Saturday, January 25th for their rivalry meet with Indiana. The Spartans will be back home this Friday against Bowling Green at 6 PM.
Full results here