LOS ANGELES, Calif. – The Wisconsin swimming and diving teams went head-to-head with two of the top squads in the country when they faced off against the No. 1 USC women’s team and No. 5 USC men’s team Saturday. The Badger women fell 144.5-109.5 while the men were defeated 145-109.
“We weren’t great today, and anytime you go up against USC in swimming, you have to be great,” head coach Whitney Hite said. “The No. 1 women’s team, No. 5 men’s team. We had some bright spots. The second half of the meet was better than the first half so we’ll just build on that.”
Back on the mainland, following a week-long training trip to Hawai’i, the Badgers turned in impressive individual performances against the Trojans, highlighted by the talents of senior Michael Weiss, sophomore Drew TeDuits, sophomore Ivy Martin and freshman Jenny Holtzen.
Weiss swam to a pair of titles, including a win in the 400-yard individual medley with a time of 3:56.73 and a first-place finish in the 1,000-yard freestyle with a time of 9:13.24, besting second place by nearly 10 seconds. The Reno, Nev., native also took second in the 500-yard freestyle (4:32.34).
Weiss has been impressive all season, and his performance in the 1,000-yard freestyle continued to show his versatility in the pool. Saturday was Weiss’ first time competing in the event this season. Despite that, he dismantled freshman Josh Anderson’s previous team-best time of 9:29.73. In fact, Weiss’ time was just under two seconds off the program record of 9:11.44
“Michael swam pretty well today.” Hite said. “To swim the 1,000, 5,000 and 400 IM and win two-out-of-three is not bad.”
Meanwhile, TeDuits turned in a pair of second-place finishes, swimming the 100-yard backstroke in 50.38 while finishing the 200-yard backstroke with a time of 1:48.15.
Senior Dan Lester turned in the only other individual top-finish for Wisconsin, swimming the 100-yard butterfly in a time of 49.37. Freshman John Bushman placed second in the 200-yard breaststroke with a time of 2:04.69.
For the women, Ivy Martin claimed a first-place tie in the 50-yard freestyle with a time of 23.04 while taking second in the 100-yard freestyle (51.05). Sister Ruby Martin came right behind with a time of 51.19 in the 200, good for third place.
Holtzen turned in a pair of second-place finishes in the 1,000-yard freestyle (10:09.27) and 500-yard freestlye (4:59.75), while senior Hannah Ross claimed second in the 200-yard backstroke with a time of 1:59.74.
Sophomore Aja Van Hout took first place in the 400-yard individual medley with a time of 4:28.26, while junior Rebecka Palm swam to first place in the 100-yard butterfly (57.13).
Both the men and women took first place in the 200-yard freestyle relay. The women did so in a time of 1:33.69, while the men swam to a time of 1:26.81.
“We’re exactly where we want to be this time in the season,” Hite said. “Tired and knowing that we’re in what I call the championship part of the season.”
“Now we’re coming back to Madison to sharpen up. We’ll be better.”
Next up for the Badgers is a trip to the east coast in two weeks where they will take on Virginia and Virginia Tech.