Indiana Daily Student

Men's swim and dive set to battle two ranked opponents

<p>Freshman Van Mathias dives into the water at the quad meet against Kentucky, Missouri and Notre Dame. Mathias’s team came in fourth place in the men’s 200-yard medley relay.&nbsp;</p>

Freshman Van Mathias dives into the water at the quad meet against Kentucky, Missouri and Notre Dame. Mathias’s team came in fourth place in the men’s 200-yard medley relay. 

On the heels of its home meet sweep, the men’s swim and dive team will travel to Austin, Texas, to battle No. 8 Florida and No. 1 Texas in its first road meet of the season. 

Last week, IU defeated Kentucky, Notre Dame and Missouri at the Counsilman Billingsley Aquatic Center to start the season 3-0. The Hoosiers are still recovering from team-wide illnesses and are looking to improve before Friday.

“We’re at about 80 percent,” Coach Ray Looze said. “For a lot of people, the health has improved but it continues to be an issue from what I can gather.”

In a two-day meet to open last season, the Hoosiers competed against the Gators and Longhorns in Gainesville, Florida. IU defeated Florida 242-187 and Texas 264-165. 

During the team’s undefeated 2016-17 year, IU also outscored both teams in Bloomington, defeating Texas 161.5-119.5 and Florida 204-77. Neither team has taken down IU in more than three years.

Despite the past success, Looze said he wants the team to put aside the recent victories and give their full attention to this weekend.

“This is a new season and honestly the past is meaningless,” Looze said. “With a new year, new freshmen and new team leaders, we’re only focusing on the here and now.”

For Florida, the team is heading into the weekend 2-0 following their victories against Florida Atlantic University, 240-58, and Louisiana State University, 164.5-129.5. 

Against FAU, Florida only lost one of the meet’s 16 events, and between the 32 events from both the FAU and LSU meets, Florida won 75 percent of them.

Following an in-team competition Sept. 28, Texas will have its season opener in the Lee and Joe Jamail Texas Swimming Center. 

Last season, Texas dominated the Big 12 Championships and took second at the NCAA Championships. IU won the competition. 

However, last season also marked the first time the Longhorns fared below a .500 win percentage in more than 10 years. 

This weekend’s two-day meet will be the first time that IU’s dive team will compete using six dives per event. Senior James Connor and sophomore Andrew Capobianco will look to repeat their success against a fresh Texas squad and team of Florida divers who struggled in their recent defeat of LSU.

The Friday competitions begin at 6 p.m. and will resume the following morning at 11 a.m. Live updates and results will be posted on iuhoosiers.com.

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