IU swimming and diving closed its season Friday as the men took down No. 7 Louisville with a 195-105 victory while the women fell, 171-129.
The men’s win ensured their first undefeated dual-meet season since 1981.
“We knew they would be pretty tuned up for this meet,” sophomore swimmer Ian Finnerty said. “So it’s just exciting to race a team that we know is going to be fast.”
Though it was senior day the Hoosier men got strong performances from underclassmen Finnerty and sophomore Vini Lanza.
Lanza won both the 100- and 200-yard butterfly and teamed with senior Bob Glover, junior Ali Khalafalla and Finnerty to win the 200-yard medley relay.
Finnerty also came up big for the Hoosiers by winning the 100-yard breaststroke, the 200-yard individual medley and finishing second in the 200-yard breaststroke.
“It’s great to be able to make history at IU,” Lanza said. “I think the whole team is working really hard, doing a great job helping each other in and out of the pool.”
The Hoosiers also got stellar performances from their diving squad.
Juniors Michael Hixon, James Connor and Cody Coldren and senior Joshua Arndt finished in the top four spots respectively in the 1-meter springboard.
IU continued its dominance on the 3-meter springboard by sweeping the top four spots again, and Hixon got the sweep for the day.
“Our depth is our strength,” Hixon said. “One through four, that’s what we look to carry into Big Tens.”
On the women’s side, sophomore Lilly King and senior Gia Dalesandro were bright spots for the Hoosiers on an otherwise dull day in what head swim coach Ray Looze said was the first loss ever to the Cardinals.
“Honestly, it wasn’t a decent performance,” Looze said. “We’re not where we want to be on the women’s side, and we’re working at it, and there’s still season left but we just need more people to step up and less talk and more action.”
King again swept the 100- and 200-yard breaststroke events but got all she could handle from Louisville senior Andee Cottrell.
King won the 100 by just .05 seconds and the 200 by .19.
“Cottrell is awesome — probably one of my best swimming friends — so I was excited to race her this week,” King said. “She’s always a really good race for me and just excited to see her mostly.”
For Dalesandro the day was bittersweet. She was able earn second-place finishes in the 100-yard backstroke and the 100-yard butterfly.
However, because she’s a senior, it was her last chance to compete in the regular season in the Counsilman-Billingsley Aquatics Center.
“Excited to kind of move on, but it’s a big chapter in my life that I’m saying goodbye to so it’ll definitely be different but good and bad,” Dalesandro said.
Among female divers, senior Michal Bower closed out her IU career with a sweep of the 1- and 3-meter springboard. Bower edged out junior teammate Jessica Parratto in both events.
“As a senior, you gain some wisdom and you kind of get to the point where you get really confident in your training, and I really trust my coaches so we did a lot of strategic prep work,” Bower said. “So today it was the first day I did all of my dives. I think learning to trust yourself and trust your training, even if it’s not perfect, is stay calm and do what you know how, I guess.”
The Hoosiers will now turn their sights toward the Big Ten Championships, which will take place Feb. 15-18 in West Lafayette, Indiana, for the women and Feb. 22-25 in Columbus, Ohio, for the men.
Like what you're reading? Support independent, award-winning college journalism on this site. Donate here.
More in Sports
IU has no kickers on its roster who have attempted a collegiate field goal.
IU's lone goal against Xavier came via freshman midfielder Joe Schmidt.
Senior Lilly King and former IU swimmer Zane Grothe led the way for the Hoosiers, each winning three medals.