Ohio State Defeats Kenyon, 207-88
Columbus, Ohio--It was another day, another victory for the No. 22-ranked Ohio State women's swimming and diving teams, with the Scarlet and Gray defeating Kenyon College 207-88 Friday evening at McCorkle Aquatic Pavilion.
The Buckeyes got off to a strong start by winning the first three events of the meet. The relay team of Liz Li, Taylor Vargo, Amanda McNulty, and Annie Jongekrijg placed first in the 200 medley relay with a time of 1:43.35 won the first event of the day, while Kathleen Cook (10:15.97) and Li (1:51.34) took first in the 1000 free and 200 free, respectively. Li's time in the 200 free was the fastest by an Ohio State swimmer so far this season.
The 100 backstroke and 100 breaststroke followed, and both events featured close finishes. Erin Dunseith's time of 57.14 narrowly edged teammate Meg Bailey (57.47) in the 100 back, while Rachael Dzierzak (1:05.61) fought off Kenyon's Katie Kaestner (1:05.64) all the way to the finish in the 100 breaststroke. Up until that point only Buckeyes had finished in the top-two spots for each prior event. Amy Bopp (2:00.48) placed first in the 200 butterfly and Maria Coy (24.04) won the 50 freestyle to give Ohio State a 105-26 lead heading into the first break.
Diving-wise, Hannah Thek had another three-meter diving win for the Buckeyes, this time recording a score of 311.85.
During the break, Dominic, seven, and Avalon, twelve, were introduced as Ohio State's new Buckeye Buddies and recognized down on the pool deck. The Buckeye Buddies Program provides Ohio State student athletes the opportunity to interact with BuckeyeThon miracle families. This program is devoted to giving athletes the opportunity to interact and build relationships with the kids and their families in a way they may otherwise not be able to do. Additionally, the program gives our miracle kids and their families the opportunity to meet and spend time with athletes whom many look up to. While these athletes may appear as superheroes to the kids, as their relationships progress, the athletes show the miracle kids they are the true heroes.
Both Dominic and Avalon have battled Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia, Avalon when she was just 17 months old and Dominic was diagnosed in 2013. You would never have guessed that though because of the big smiles on their faces.
Camey Rabold, a member of the Student Athlete Advisory Board, had a chance talk with the team’s new Buckeye Buddies and stand with them as they were being recognized. Buckeye Buddies have a chance to request a certain sport to be involved with, and both Dominic and Avalon requested to be paired up with the swim team.
“It’s really exciting that they wanted to be a part of the swim meet and the swim team,” Rabold said. “They were asking me questions about how meets work and about diving.”
“It’s nice to see young kids get involved with swimming. It’s an up-and-coming sport so it’s awesome to see kids who are interested and who can come out and support us.”
Ohio State continued its winning ways coming out of the break, with Cook (51.83) finishing first in the 100 freestyle and freshman Mikayla Murphy (2:04.08) the swimming the fastest time in the 200 backstroke. More first-place finishers followed: Katie Antal (2:22.91) in the 200 breaststroke, Meg Bailey (4:56.60) in the 500 freestyle, and Elizabeth Auckley (56.60) in the 100 butterfly were all the fastest in their respective events heading into the final break. During that break, Thek won yet another diving event, this time the one-meter with a score of 289.65.
In the final two events of the meet it was more of the same. Zulal Zeren outpaced her competitors in the 200 IM with a time of 2:06.25 and the relay team of Jongekrijg, Emily Albrecht, Christi, and Cara Norris (3:30.39) took first in the 400 freestyle relay.
It was the third victory in three meets for Ohio State this season. The Buckeyes have a quick turnaround, as they are set to travel to West Lafayette, Indiana to face Purdue and Notre Dame tomorrow afternoon at 3:30 pm.