The Illini will square off with Iowa State on Friday at 6 p.m. and will host Iowa for Splash Bash on Saturday at 11 a.m.
Jan. 17, 2013
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - After a nearly two-month-long break in its schedule, the Fighting Illini swimming and diving team will return to the ARC Pool this weekend to take on Iowa State and Iowa. The Illini will square off with Iowa State on Friday at 6 p.m. and will host Iowa for Splash Bash on Saturday at 11 a.m. Splash Bash will feature free snacks, carnival games and vouchers for one free goldfish from Sailfin Pet Shop for the first 100 kids in attendance. Open swim will follow the meet if time permits. Admission is free.
The Orange and Blue enter the weekend with a 1-2 dual record, coming off a second-place finish at the Northwestern Invitational in November. The Illini captured 15 top-three finishes over the course of the three-day event, including three first-place finishes by sophomore Alison Meng.
Iowa State is 2-3 in dual meets this season with wins over South Dakota and South Dakota State. The Cyclones' three losses have all come to Big Ten opponents, including Iowa, Nebraska and Minnesota.
"Iowa State is going to be a tough and competitive meet," Illini head coach Sue Novitsky said. "The Cyclones have been swimming well this season, and we match up really tight in a lot of events. It is going to be another opportunity for the team to compete in a pressure situation and take it event by event. This weekend is going to be about which team can maintain its focus and bring the big swims and dives."
On Saturday, Iowa will bring a 4-1 record to the ARC Pool with its lone loss coming to Minnesota. The Illini hold a 14-10 all-time record against the Hawkeyes.
"Iowa has also been swimming really well and has a lot of talented athletes," Novitsky said. "I expect my team to come in and compete with focus, courage and all the way to the last stroke or dive. I believe that we can compete and have a battle all the way through the meet. Competing in back-to-back dual meets is going to be a fantastic opportunity for us to work on being able to come back with energy and determination in multiple sessions, just like at the Big Ten Championships."