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ND Swimming: Irish head to IU for invitational meet

Molly Sammon | Friday, November 20, 2009

The Irish will test their early season training this weekend at the Hoosierland Invitational in Bloomington, Ind.

“I think this meet will provide a good benchmark for us right now,” junior freestyler and breaststroker Amywren Miller said. “It’s time we got up to race and I think everyone is excited to have the opportunity this weekend.”

The biggest competition that the Irish will see this weekend will come from host Indiana, a team coming off a big win last week against Big Ten swimming powerhouse, the Michigan Wolverines.

“Indiana will be a big challenger for us this weekend,” senior captain freestyler Megan Farrell said. “Indiana is currently a top 10 team so they will provide us with some great competition at their home pool.

Aside from the No. 9 Hoosiers, the Irish (0-2) will also be up against the Cincinnati Bearcats at this weekend’s three-day event.

At their last meet, the Irish fell to the Purdue Boilermakers, a loss the girls spent this week trying to make up for in practice to ensure a victory against Indiana and Cincinnati.

“We have focused in on a variety of race details, starts, turns, paces and finishes,” Irish coach Brian Barnes said. “I believe we are going to come out of this meet with several lifetime best swims.”

In terms of preparing themselves physically for the meet, some have decided to push themselves harder and others are resting with hopes of being completely revitalized for their respective races.

“Some of the girls have been resting up for the meet and others have been training through,” Miller said “Despite the difference I think all of us are ready for the meet and ready to post some good times this season.”

A major difference between this event in particular and the rest of the meets the girls have participated in this season provides a potential benefit for the Irish.

“Because this is a championship-style meet featuring both preliminary and final rounds, most girls will have the opportunity to race each of their events two times this weekend,” Farrell said. “This allows the coaches to critique our preliminary swims so that we can make corrections and changes to our race plans for our finals swims, which is of great benefit to each individual on the team.”

The meet will begin with preliminary events at 9 a.m.  Friday at Indiana University’s Cousilman-Billingsly Aquatic Center and will last until Saturday evening.