Women's Swimming
Illini Stumble at Illinois State, 157-143

Allison Meng set two pool records on Friday at Illinois State.
Allison Meng set two pool records on Friday at Illinois State.

Nov. 10, 2012

NORMAL, Ill. - The Fighting Illini swimming and diving team (1-2) fell to Illinois State (1-1), 157-143, at Horton Pool on Friday night. The Illini won eight out of 16 events while breaking three Horton Pool records.

"Illinois State did all of the little things right tonight and raced with conviction," Illini head coach Sue Novitsky said. "Overall, I thought we were pretty sloppy in our execution. We let them take control and could never get over the hump. I purposely put up a line-up that was going to have tight races because for us to grow as a team, we need to handle the pressure when we may not be at our best. Our younger swimmers need to learn from this experience and work on making the changes to stay calm and focused."

The Illini were led by sophomore Alison Meng, who broke pool records in the 50 back (26.90) and 100 back (56.80), and senior Kathleen Knight, who broke a pool record in the 100 fly (57.05). Other individual first-place finishers for the Orange and Blue were sophomore Megan Marchuk in the 200 free (1:54.61), junior Erica Lynn in the 100 breast (1:06.18) and 200 IM (2:09.72), freshmen Sarah Sykstus in the 200 fly (2:06.06) and Sloane McDermott in the 200 back (2:06.00). The team of Meng, Erica Lynn, Sykstus and Marchuk also captured a first-place finish in the 200 medley relay with a time of 1:48.06.

Earning second-place finishes for the Illini were junior Alyssa Toland in the 1000 free (10:36.00), freshman Lori Lynn in the 200 fly (2:06.98), Sykstus in the 100 free (53.41) and junior Jessica Holz in the 200 back (2:06.33). The 200 free relay team of Marchuk, Meng, Lori Lynn and Sykstus also earned a second-place finish.

Four Illini swimmers captured third-place finishes including sophomore Kayla Dlugopolski in the 1000 free (10:41.42), junior Cara Chuang in the 100 back (59.73), sophomore Alexa Chavez in the 200 back (2:09.62) and Alyssa Toland in the 500 free (5:09.38).

The Orange and Blue secured seven fourth-place finishes, including Sloane McDermott in the 100 back (1:00.02), junior Emma Williams in the 200 fly (2:10.17), sophomore Sabrinne Gibson in the 50 free (25.56), freshman Isabella Schamber in the 200 breast (2:27.32), Lori Lynn in the 500 free (5:09.48), junior Emily Wilkinson in the 100 fly (59.00) and freshman Stephanie Hein in the 200 IM (2:11.65).

Capturing fifth-place finishes for the Illini were Anne Goering in the 100 free (53.93) and 200 free (1:59.04), Schamber in the 100 breast (1:07.92), Kirsten Zborek in the 50 free (25.78), Hein in the 200 breast (2:28.90), Kayla Dlugopolski in the 500 free (5:15.37), Marin Thompson in the 100 fly (59.79) and Williams in the 200 IM (2:13.15).

"The crucial point was right at the middle of the meet, when the momentum changed and we never recovered," Novitsky said. "We had people that did step up and compete well. However, as a complete team, we did not get it done. We have to really work on cleaning things up this week with a lot of racing coming up at the TYR Invitational at Northwestern."

On the boards, senior Darragh McDermott had two second-place finishes in both the one-meter dive (254.09) and three-meter dive (224.55). Sophomore Erika Murphy placed fourth in the one-meter dive (226.41) and fifth in the three-meter dive (212.61). Sophomore Emily Fung earned points with her fourth-place finish in the three-meter dive (215.62).

Up next, the Illini will travel to Northwestern on Friday, Nov. 16 for the TYR Invitational. The Orange and Blue finished second in the invitational last season.