Bobcat Swimmers Overcome Troubling Conditions At Xavier

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Ohio swimming entered the home stretch of its regular season after a brief lull, taking at least first in every event other than the 150-yard butterfly. All of the top finishes contributed to a 127-74 Bobcat victory.

Contrary to the rest of its competitions, the swimming team traveled to Xavier University without the diving team. The Musketeers have a fairly small aquatic facility leaving no room for a diving well or team against which to compete.

The O’Connor Sports Center proved a challenging location for Ohio swimmers as the murky waters made judging distance difficult for long-distance swimmers like Laurin Williams.

“Our turns were a little off, our finishes were a little off, they’re just not used to the pool,” interim head coach Derick Roe said. “Majority of the team has never gotten the chance to compete, so it’s just learning, making adjustments on the fly.”

The waters didn’t prove too challenging for Williams as she still managed to win her two long-distance events, the 800-yard freestyle and 400-yard freestyle.

Although Ohio came out with 10 victories, two of them ended with milliseconds separating first and second.

Ohio swimmer Addy Ferguson completed her 50-yard freestyle performance at 24.98 seconds, just .06 ahead of her Xavier competitors. Ferguson would also take first place in the 100-yard freestyle at 53.63 seconds, followed by teammates Michelle Gasior and Carrie Dukes.

“I think I did well, I’ve been sick all week,” Ferguson said. “It was more of a loosen-up meet, I guess, for everyone for tomorrow and we’re all excited about Miami.”

Continuing with the close finishes, Rachel Stearns maintained her lead in the 100-yard individual medley to beat out Blue and Gray opponent by just .03 seconds, the closest finish of the meet. She translated her fast performance to the 150-yard backstroke, finishing first at 1:31.06, followed by Casey Papp at 1:33.52.

“It’s always good to race out of conference, get to do some events that we’re not used to doing,” Roe said. “I thought the ladies did really, really well. They did a great jobs.”

The Green and White squad returns to the blocks early on the morning of Feb. 8 to compete in the long-standing rivalry in the “Battle of the Bricks.” The Miami RedHawks will host Ohio starting at 10 a.m.