Florida International came out on top in the first day of competition at their annual Dual-a-Palooza yesterday afternoon. The Panthers won 10 of the 12 events that were contested, taking their victory over in-conference rival Rice 133-90. Last year, Rice took second at the Conference USA championships, finishing 104 points behind the Panthers.
At the Dual-a-Palooza, four teams (FIU, Rice, FAU, Miami-Fla) compete simultaneously and scoring is in a straight head-to-head dual meet format. The stand out star for the Rice Owls yesterday was Alicia Caldwell. The Australian sophomore was the only event winner for the Owls, finishing the 100 free in a time of 51.52. She was also the anchor of the other Rice win, the 400 medley relay. The team of Shelly Patton, Marie-Claire Schillinger, Kiley Beall, and Caldwell touched in 3:51.35.
The defending C-USA champs were lead by sophomores Kyna Pereira and Naomi Ruele. South African Pereira took first place finishes in both distance freestyle disciplines; the 1000 (10:06.76) and 500 (4:58.47). She was the top performer in both of these events last season for the Panthers. Yesterday she was only 2/10 off last season’s 1000 time, which suggests that there will substantial improvements by the end of the season for this sophomore. On the other end of the distance spectrum, Ruele- of Botswana- took first place in the 50 back (26.86) and 50 free (24.14). The backstroke specialist finished 3rd and 5th in the 50 and 100 back at the 2014 South Africa Championships.
Other Panther event winners:
- Skye Carey– 200 back (2:02.84)
- Rebecca Quesnel– 1 meter dive (298.35)
- Chase Harris– 200 breast (2:16.75)
- Valerie Inghels – 100 fly (57.66)
- Jessica Chadwick– 200 IM (2:06.39).
Full results available here.
Day 2 of the Dual-a-Palooza starts at 10am today where the Owls face off against Miami-Fla and the Panthers take on FAU.