January 20, 2018
Swim & Dive Falls to Notre Dame

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – The nationally ranked Florida State swimming and diving teams suffered a close loss to No. 22/22 Notre Dame in a 19-event two-day dual that came to a close on Saturday at the Morcom Aquatics Center.

The 25th-ranked women, 4-7 (1-3 ACC) fell 193-160, while the No. 20 men fell 191-162, dropping to 3-5 (1-2 ACC). Notre Dame moves to 9-1 (women) and 6-2 (men) overall.

“I thought we stayed tough with how we competed,” FSU head coach Neal Studd said. “We did have some great performances for this time of year and I’m very encouraged on our progress as we head towards championship season. Hats off to Notre Dame. They are a very good team.”

The women were victorious in six of the nine events on Saturday, including five straight to finish the meet.

Florida State opened the session with a victory in the 400 medley relay, clocking a 3:40.52 behind freshman Madeline Cohen along with seniors Natalie Pierce, Tayla Lovemore and Alexi Smith.

After Notre Dame claimed first and second in both the 500 free and 200 back, Pierce stepped up and won the 200 breast by almost three seconds, touching with a time of 2:14.62 while junior Natalie Purnell finished third (2:17.80).

Lovemore followed with a victory in the 100 fly with a time of 54.60, leading from start to finish.

Junior Shelly Drozda held on to win the 200 IM, edging out Notre Dame’s top swimmer (2:04.98) with a time of 2:04.81.

The Seminoles claimed first and second for the second straight day in diving, as sophomore Ayla Bonniwell won 3-meter with a score of 306.00 ahead of senior Blaire Mulka who tallied 298.43.

Smith ended the meet on a high note with a 22.56 anchor leg to lift the team of Lovemore, freshman Emma Terebo and junior Leila Johnston to a comeback win in the 200 free relay with a time of 1:32.47.

Following Friday’s session, the men trailed the Irish by eight points.

In the opening 400 medley relay, the team of seniors Connor Kalisz and Matt Ankerholz along with juniors Kanoa Kaleoaloha finished second with a time of 3:14.52.

After Notre Dame swept the 500 free, Florida State added three scoring swims in the 100 free, led by junior Will Pisani (45.00) in second, followed by sophomore Ribeiro de Souza (45.20) in third and senior Joe Plechy (45.45) in fourth.

Following his 48.36 lead-off in the 100 back of the 400 medley relay, Kalisz came back with a second place finish in the 200 back, touching with a time of 1:48.08.

Ankerholz held off the Irish for the second time this weekend, securing the 200 breast win with a time of 2:01.32 while freshman Julia Horrego grabbed third (2:02.95).

Kaleoaloha gave the Noles back-to-back wins after a dominating win in the 100 fly, clocking a 47.62.

Florida State showed its sprinting depth by finishing first and second in the 200 free relay. Senior Chad Mylin led off the top team with a split of 19.81 before handing the near one-second lead to Plechy, junior Emir Muratovic and Kaleoaloha for a final time of 1:19.76.

The Noles had a strong back half of the relay from the ‘B’ team as freshman Oszkar Lavotha, Ribeiro de Souza, sophomore Vladimir Stefanik and junior John Vann held off Notre Dame’s top team for second, clocking 1:21.97.

In diving, freshman Josh Davidson (297.75) and sophomore Cameron Thatcher (288.45) added second and third place finishes on 1-meter.

Florida State will compete in its final dual meet of the season on Jan. 27 at the Morcom Aquatics Center at 11 a.m. against Florida Atlantic.

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