Swimming cruises at IUPUI

The Butler women’s swimming team made a big splash at IUPUI’s Meet of Champions last weekend.

Out of the 14 events that the Bulldogs competed in, 13 were either a lifetime or seasonbest effort.

“It gave us a lot of confidence,” freshman Kathleen Brannen said. “This is probably our biggest and fastest meet in terms of competition.

“It was really exciting to have everyone do really well on Friday and then come back and have just as good of a performance on Saturday as well.”

Head coach Maurice Stewart shared Brannen’s enthusiasm.

“This is one of the best starts to a meet we have had this season as a team,” he said. Brannen clocked a 5:16.64 in the 500 freestyle while freshman Katie Ring led the 200 freestyle relay with a 24.94 split in the anchor position.

“As freshmen, a lot of us didn’t really know what to expect,” Brannen said. “I could tell that we we’re all pretty excited and ready to show what we’ve been working for.”

Ring, freshman Rosalie Fidanze and sophomore Jessica Onstwedder also posted lifetime-best performances.

“We raced really well,” Stewart said. “I saw a lot of our swimmers out-touch a lot of other teams in the pool.”

The Bulldogs will now head back for a long stretch of training before their next meet at the IUPUI Relays on Jan. 17. Butler will look to take advantage of the time they’ve been given to come back revamped and recuperated after a two-month layoff.

“We’ve had quite a few injuries this season,” Brannen said. “This was sort of our first meet back as a whole team. “From what I saw, once everyone is back and used to the water again, we’ll be a force to be reckoned with.”

Stewart agreed with Brannen’s assessment.

“These ladies made a statement that Butler swimming is an up and coming team,” Stewart said. “I feel we just gave our competition a taste of that with our team performance.”