Swim and dive sunk by Nebraska

PRESTON JENSEN, Sports Writer

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The UNI Panthers swimming and diving team hit the road for their first two meets of the season in Nebraska.

The purple and gold first took on the Nebraska-Omaha Mavericks on Friday night and barely snuck past the Mavericks by a final score of 157-143.

Junior Madison Rinaldi claimed victory in the 100-yard backstroke, swimming it in 1:00.01, and the 200 backstroke finishing with a time of 2:04.85.

All-conference swimmer Katie Taylor took home wins in the 50 freestyle, 200 breaststroke and the 200 individual medley (IM), which she is the reigning conference champion.

Moriah Ross won the 100 breaststroke, Crystal Florman claimed first in the 100 freestyle, and Kylie Engstrom dominated the 500 freestyle swimming at 5:12.22. The 200 medley relay team of Taylor, Ross, Florman and Lauren Havertape took first place with a time of 1:46.12 and Florman, Ross, Havertape and Abby Meyer won the 200 freestyle relay.

In the diving well, Jayden Lovell took fourth on the one-meter springboard with a team high score of 220.72. Lovell also led the Panthers on the three-meter springboard taking third place with a 226.12 score.

On Saturday, the Panthers continued their road trip into Nebraska as they moved on to Lincoln to take on the Nebraska Cornhuskers. UNI gave it their all against the Cornhuskers, but were unable to get their second win of the season falling 166-77.

Despite the loss, there were some amazing individual achievements made by the Panthers. Taylor was able to clinch victory in both the 200 IM and the 200 backstroke. Florman managed to win the 100 freestyle for a second straight day as well as take home the win in the 50 freestyle as well. 

In the 200 medley relay, Havertape, Florman, Taylor and Ross managed to place second in the event with time of 1:45.21.  Matching their efforts, Meyer, Havertape, Natalie Nelson and Lauren Kacmarynski were fast enough to finish in second place for the Panthers in the event.

UNI’s divers had some success on the boards. Lovell took fourth place on the one-meter springboard while freshman Madison Schoppe finished right behind her in fifth place.

The Panthers next meet will be on Sat. Oct. 13 as they host the South Dakota State Jackrabbits, Western Illinois Leathernecks and Valparaiso Crusaders.

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