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Saturday, March 2
The Indiana Daily Student

sports

Hoosier swimming and diving teams to face Louisville

The IU men’s and women’s swimming and diving teams will compete against Louisville tonight at Counsilman-Billingsley Aquatic Center.

Louisville’s men’s team stand as the No. 7 team in the country. The Hoosier men are No. 8.

“It’s going to be a very, very close meet,” IU Coach Ray Looze said. “If we can win a relay, that will be a huge boost to us because their relays are significantly ahead of ours time wise.”

The team has had two weeks to prepare for its toughest competition since the beginning of the season. It most recently defeated Iowa and Missouri.

Looze said his team has been working to peak in speed and power at the right time.

“We don’t really change our cycle for anything,” he said. “We don’t change it for a dual meet, for Big Tens or for NCAAs. The body likes routine, and that’s what we do.”
Last year, the Cardinals were no match for the men’s team, winning 193-107.

“Fast really describes everyone on their team,” sophomore Kyle Johnson said. “They may be deeper than we are, but we have talent. We have people that’ll really step up, and I think that’ll be the determining factor.”

Looze said he will also be looking for some of his younger swimmers to step up this week. On the women’s side, he said he wants to see swimmers who haven’t scored points this year do so.

Ultimately, he said, he wants his team to show their true depth.

Louisville’s women’s team is currently ranked No. 13. The Hoosiers are No. 11. Looze said he expects the women’s team will face some future NCAA finalists in Louisville.

“They’ve got one of the best flyers and sprint freestylers in the country,” he said. “They’re capable of winning all their events, and then when you put them together, they field a pretty good relay as well. So our women are going to be challenged by those outstanding swimmers.”

The Hoosiers were also victorious in 2013, defeating Louisville 160-140.

This is their third consecutive weekend with a meet and it marks the end of their dual meet season. Next up are the Big Ten Championships.

At this point, competition serves as preparation for the post season.

“With the kind of fitness we have, really meets are irrelevant to tire us out,” Looze said. “It’s just building momentum, getting sharp, building confidence. Louisville’s a really good team, so that’s going to be a nice last challenge for us leading into Big Tens and then NCAAs.”

For the diving team, the focus of practice the past couple weeks has been quality over quantity as they have cut down on repetitions to get back in competitive form.

Most importantly, this weekend will serve as an indicator of what the divers need to improve upon before Big Tens.

IU Coach Drew Johansen said he’s looking to find any flaws in a specific category or technique of the dive.

“Placement isn’t as important to me as discovering if there’s a weak link in the chain of dives that they’re going to be doing,” he said. “Obviously, we want to place well, and winning is also something you have to learn how to do, but I’m looking to find if there’s any little bits we can tune up.”

Looze said he will need to see an overall team effort if they want the same result as last year.

“We have to win races,” he said. “We have to get contributions from everybody. If we can beat this team, that’ll be a great win and a confidence booster going into Big Tens.”

Follow reporter Grace Palmieri on Twitter @gpalmieri7

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