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Swimming and Diving finishes 1-1-1 in first meet of 2020

By Chase Henry
Staff Writer

The FGCU women’s swimming and diving team (7-5-1) beat Illinois State University, tied against Tulane University and lost to Liberty University in its first meet of 2020.

This is the second meeting of the season between FGCU and Tulane, as both teams were involved in the Phil Hansel Invitational in November. The Green Wave outscored the Eagles, 716-554, in that meet and also finished in fourth place, while FGCU finished in ninth place.

Wiktoria Czarnecka achieved FGCU’s only first-place finish in the swimming portion of the meet, finishing first in the 50-yard freestyle. The event came down to the very end, and Czarnecka’s time of 23.75 was just over .3 seconds faster than Liberty’s Colleen Donlin.

Petra Halmai achieved a second-place finish in the 400-yard individual medley, the 100-yard butterfly and the 100-yard breaststroke.

An Eagles relay team consisting of Halmai, Czarnecka, Julia Rodriguez and Cassidy Fry finished second in the 200-yard medley relay. Rodriguez’s highest individual finish of the meet came in the 100-yard backstroke, where she finished in second place.

FGCU captured first place, third place and fourth place in both diving events, as Reese Wakefield finished first, Delaney Nelson finished third and Isabeau Keene finished fourth in the one-meter dive and the three-meter dive.

Joely Merriman made her swimming debut for the Eagles, helping the relay team (which included Fry, Czarnecka and Reinhardt) finish fourth in the 400-yard freestyle relay.

“There were a lot of good things that happened today, and it was great to see Joely Merriman get a chance to compete for the first time for us,” said head coach Dave Rollins. “I never know what to expect coming off the holidays, but it was great to see everyone back and racing again. We have plenty of time before CCSAs when we will see Liberty again.”

Up next for the swimming and diving team is a dual meet against Stoney Brook University on Saturday, Jan. 11, at 11 a.m. at the FGCU Aquatics Complex.

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