Swim teams drop rematch to Valpo

Sean Hastings, Staff Reporter

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The Eastern men’s and women’s swim teams both dropped their meets to Valparaiso in the second matchup between these two schools.

The Panthers came out on top in the first meeting on the season but fell this time around.

The men lost by a score of 140.5-121.5 and the women lost 147-115.

The Panthers were not at full strength for the meet with some swimmers not competing or swimmers who were just getting over sicknesses, which hurt them.

“Not having Junior Dylan (Ferguson), and freshman Steve Truchon in the meet was hurtful to us, and with their help, we could have won the meet,” coach Jacqueline Michalski said.

Despite the losses, the Panthers combined for 10 first-place finishes in the meet.

Juniors Jake Roberts and Kyle Ruckert were able to score some points for the Panthers with first and second place finishes, respectively, in both the men’s 500-yard freestyle and the 1000-yard freestyle

Roberts won the 1,000 with a time of 10:24.53 and the 500 with a 5:03.35, and Ruckert finished with times of 10:28.15 and 5:06.37.

Michalksi was pleased with how they swam in those meets.

“These two boys, along with fellow junior Dylan (Ferguson) show so much heart for this team, and that is really inspiring as a coach and excited me,” Michalksi said. “Those events were some great momentum building during the meet.”

Another first-place finisher for the Panthers was freshman Amy Smith.

Smith was able to win the women’s 100-yard backstroke again with a time of 1:01.10, and fellow freshman Dani DiMatteo won the women’s 50-yard backstroke with a 28.86.

Sophomore Brogan O’Doherty won the 50-yard backstroke for the men with a time of 24.19

Another Panther who capture a first-place finish in which Michalski was very happy with was junior Kaylee Morris in the women’s 50-yard freestyle with a 24.34.

“Miss Kaylee Morris had a wonderful swim meet over the weekend, she got some in-season best times in her event and stepped up in a new event for us in the 100-fly,” Michalksi said.

The Panthers were very close to winning some races but were just out touched by the Valpo swimmers.

“I was a little disappointed with how close some of the races were, and where we just seemed to be out touched in so many events,” Michalski said. “I’m really hoping that we can start to be mentally engaged when time is set aside to work on finishes in practice so this doesn’t happen again.”

The Panthers are home again Friday to against Saint Louis at 5 p.m. for the last meet of the season before the end-of-season conference meet.

Michalski hopes to get everyone healthy and ready to compete in the end-of-season meet coming up Feb. 18-21.

Sean Hastings can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected].