Swimming and diving to take on Minnesota at home

Dan Cole

The ISU swimming and diving team faces Minnesota this weekend, hoping to build on last week’s strong performance in Cedar Rapids and improve to 2-0 on the season.

The Cyclones defeated Northern Iowa last Saturday by an impressive score of 214-86.

When the Cyclones and Gophers met last season, Minnesota came out on top, defeating the Cyclones by a final score of 157-129. ISU coach Duane Sorenson hopes his team’s performance last week will help provide momentum and confidence against the Gophers this weekend.

“UNI was a really good meet for us,” Sorenson said. “We were just looking for our women to compete to the best of their ability under the circumstances and we were very happy with that.

“Minnesota is going to be a great challenge. It’s a chance for our women to see where they rank in the upper Midwest.”

The Cyclones hope senior Tiana Wollin, who managed to place first in both the 100 and 200 butterfly while battling a slight sickness against the Panthers last week, will provide a spark once again Saturday.

“UNI was a good meet to start out with. They were good competition,” Wollin said. “It was a good chance for us to race.”

The Cyclones will be glad to have Wollin back at full strength for Saturday’s meet.

Freshman Amanda Paulson also had a strong showing in Cedar Falls, her first collegiate meet, helping the team place first in both the 200-medley relay and the 200-freestyle relay. Paulson also placed first in the 50 freestyle.

“UNI was a really fun meet,” Paulson said. “It was a lot of fun to bond with the team and cheer for everybody, and I really like how the relays went.”

The Cyclones will be happy to return home for this weekend’s meet, as they were 5-1 at home last season.

“You always have home pool advantage,” Sorenson said. “You know the walls a little bit better, you know the lighting. You just feel more comfortable and confident in your home pool.”

Wollin said the Gophers, already owning a 2-0 record this season, are sure to be one of the tougher opponents the Cyclones will face this season. The Minnesota native, who competed against the Gophers last season in Minneapolis, knows what they are capable of.

“It’s a good chance to go out there and see what we’ve got,” Wollin said. “We can’t let anything overwhelm us. We just need to focus on what we’ve got to do.”

The meet is set to begin at 1 p.m. Saturday at Beyer Pool.