The independent newspaper of the University of Iowa community since 1868

The Daily Iowan

The independent newspaper of the University of Iowa community since 1868

The Daily Iowan

The independent newspaper of the University of Iowa community since 1868

The Daily Iowan

Swimming teams take on final duals

Veron Herrman of Northern Iowa swims the women’s 200 breast stroke on Sunday, Dec. 6, 2015. in the Campus Recreation and Wellness Center. Denver, Drury, Harvard, Incarnate Word, North Dakota, and Milwaukee were the schools represented, along with UNI, at this years Hawkeye Invitational. Iowa won the invitational for the second year in a row. (The Daily Iowan/Brooklynn Kascel)

The men and women of the Iowa swimming and diving team will be in their own pool for the last time this season on Friday, taking on the Western Illinois Leathernecks in their final regular season dual meet of the year.

The Hawkeyes will use the meet, which has a different format than most other duals, to polish technique and form before championship season.

“It’s a completely different format,” head coach Marc Long said. “It’s more of a sprint format. People will get to swim some events that we think will really help them prepare for our championship meet. So it’s really just a final prep for swimming and diving.”

Western Illinois has a dual meet record of 3-2 on the year, with wins coming against Valparaiso, Truman State, and Washington University (St. Louis), and loses to St. Louis and South Dakota University.

This will also be the Leatherneck’s last opportunity in the pool before their conference meet, the Summit League Championships, on Feb. 17-20.

The Iowa men are coming off a successful weekend at the Shamrock Invitational in South Bend, Indiana, where they defeated Notre Dame and Missouri State.

The men’s squad has picked up the pace in the pool in recent weeks, winning three of their last four matchups.

For them, this weekend is an opportunity to swim some fast times.

“The outline of the meet, with the rest in between events, is nice,” senior Roman Trussov said. “It will help some guys swim some faster times before our conference meet.”

The Iowa women are also coming off of a two-win weekend at the Shamrock Invitational, with wins against Grand Canyon and Illinois State.

Junior Emma Sougstad continued her successful season with individual titles in the 200-individual medley and 100 and 200-breaststroke.

The next step for the women, and the men as well, is to put everything together in one meet and really make an impact.

The teams have had good individual performances all year, but come February and March, the team needs to be clicking on all cylinders.

“We wanted to sweep [the Shamrock Invitational],” Long said. “We did not quite do that, but we did swim pretty well against some good opponents. I think individually, we saw some great things. With the relays, if you look at the men, they had some good relays. It was kind of a mixed bag. We wanted to win it all, but we did have some good performances within the event.”

This weekend will be about more than what happens in the pool, however. With it being the last home meet of the year, it will be the last time the senior class of Hawkeye swimmers gets to compete for the Black and Gold in Iowa City.

“This weekend is not very important in terms of points,” Sougstad said. “It’s meant to be fun and enjoy the seniors at their last home meet. It’s been great to learn from them and be their teammate. This is a major part of heading into Big Tens, supporting the seniors and cheering them on into their last stretch of their collegiate career.”

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