‘Canes defeat state rival in weekend meet

Southern suns and sky blue water helped pull the lady Hurricanes to a victory over Florida Atlantic in a dual meet Saturday at the Whitten University Center pool. Miami defeated the Owls 187-110. The men were not so lucky, falling to FAU 226-36.

The women dominated, winning an impressive13 of 16 events.

“Everyone really stepped up and improved from last week’s racing, and it really shows,” said head swimming coach James Sweeney.

Sophomore Katalin Ferenczi won the 100-yard backstroke (58.05), 200-yard backstroke (2:03.09), and the 200-yard medley relay in which the four-man team posted an impressive time of 1:48.18. She also placed second in the 200-yard individual medley (2:08.63).

Freshman Adrien Ferguson won the 200-yard butterfly (2:06.70), 200-yard individual medley (2:08.30), and the 200-yard medley relay. Senior Christina Williams also had three victories, winning the 50-yard freestyle (23.88), the 100-yard freestyle (51.52), and the 200-yard individual medley.

All-American diver senior Katie Beth Bryant led the ‘Canes in both the one-meter and three-meter contests, posting 193.80 and 139.65, respectively. Senior Emily Spychala grabbed second in both contests with 191.10 in the one-meter and 137.75 in the three. Junior Melanie Rinaldi finished the sweep in third place with a score of 180.70 in the one-meter and 128.15 in the three-meter contest.

All-American swimmer Manon van Rooijen was victorious in the 200-yard freestyle (1:52.42) as well as the 100-yard butterfly (59.02). She came in second in the 100-yard freestyle (52.32).

“Our team is bigger and we’re stronger than last year,” she said. “We were in a little bit of a hole [then] but I think we’re going a lot faster this year.”

FAU defeated UM last season.

Other winners in Saturday’s meet included Meghan Clabby in the 100-yard breaststroke (1:07.89) and Elaine Schwartz in the 200-yard breaststroke (2:24.64). Schwartz also placed second in the 200-yard butterfly with a time of 2:07.61. Christine Swanson, part of the victorious 200-yard medley relay team, placed second in the 100-yard breaststroke, posting a time of 1:08.08.

In men’s diving, sophomore Miguel Velazquez delivered for the Hurricanes, taking first place in the one-meter (196.90) and three-meter (151.85) contests.

“We still have a lot of work to do with some tough competition coming up,” said Sweeney. “Everyone [has already] stepped up and improved from last week’s racing and it really shows.”

Having placed third in the Big East last year, Van Rooijen believes the ‘Canes will be able to clinch the conference this season. There will have to be hard work and even greater improvement on the team in order to prove itself, with the U.S. Open in Minneapolis on the horizon.

“We’re progressing,” said Sweeney. “It’s still really early in the year and I know we’ll just keep working hard. We still have a ways to go but we’re definitely on the right track.”

The Hurricanes are 1-1 in dual meet competition after a loss to Florida State last Saturday at home.

The women are set to face Tennessee on November 8 in Knoxville. Dual meet competition continues at the Indiana University invitational, beginning November 22.

You can reach Mellisa Teich at melissateich@hotmail.com.