Hawkeyes Sink Coyotes in Home Opener

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IOWA CITY, Iowa — The University of Iowa men’s and women’s swimming and diving teams combined to win 31-of-32 events in Thursday night’s home opening dual against South Dakota at the CRWC Natatorium.  The Hawkeye men tallied a 183-108 victory, while the women topped the Coyotes, 175-116.
“We saw some great racing tonight in our home opener,” said UI head coach Marc Long.  “Hats off to the team for their performance, but it’s a long season and we have another meet tomorrow, so we need to get ready for that.”
The Hawkeyes got off to a hot start, finishing 1-2-3 in both the men’s and women’s 200-medley relay.  They never looked back.  Iowa ended the night with a total of seven 1-2-3 finishes. Twenty Hawkeyes swam to first-place finishes on the night.
Senior Emma Sougstad, the reigning Big Ten Swimmer of the Week, continued her winning ways.  She swam to victories in the 100 fly (55.73) and 100 IM (57.38), pushing her individual win total to four this season.
Six freshmen combined for nine first-place showings in the individual swimming events, including Isaak Webb, who touched first in the 50 breast (26.31), 100 breast (57.87), and 100 IM (52.95).  Webb was also a member of Iowa’s top finishing 200-medley relay (1:33.33).
The Hawkeyes put together another strong performance in the diving well, led by sophomore Will Brenner.  The Ypsilanti, Michigan, native dove to a school record score of 368.00 points off the 1-meter, breaking the previous record of 365.00, which he set last season. He also won the 3-meter, tallying a career-high 357.10 — the seventh-best score in school history.
Senior Brandis Heffner and redshirt sophomore Matthew Mauser posted NCAA Zone standard scores off both the 1 and 3-meter events.  Heffner recorded totals of 328.20 and 351.85, while Mauser dove to scores of 309.90 and 357.00.  Mauser’s 3-meter total ranks eighth all-time in school history.
Freshman Thelma Baatz-Strandberg notched her first career victory, with a win in the 1-meter (288.65) – an NCAA Zone standard, and the highest total for the Hawkeye women this season.  She finished second off the 3-meter (281.75)
“I was pleased with all of our divers tonight,” said diving coach Todd Waikel.  “We stuck to our strategy, our game plan.  I’m proud of Will, he is a heck of an athlete, but he still has more in him.  I’m eager to see him go even further.”
“I always try to do the best that I can, that’s how you get better,” said Brenner.  “It was a great meet for me.  I was consistent and did my best dives when I had to.”
The Hawkeyes are back in the water on Friday for a double dual against Missouri State and Purdue.  Competition begins at 2 p.m. (CT) at the CRWC Natatorium.  Admission is free to the public.
“We have a great group of teams coming in, and we have a chance to sort of mix things up tomorrow,” said Long.  “It’s time to get refocused, recharged, and ready to go Friday.”