Cyclones emerge as conference leader after defeating West Virginia

Iowa State hosted Nebraska for a swimming and diving meet on Oct. 26 at Beyer Hall.

John Miller

On Saturday morning, the Iowa State Cyclones (7-3, 2-0 Big 12) swimming and diving team edged out the West Virginia Mountaineers (3-3, 1-1 Big 12) by a score of 152-148.

To start off the meet, the Cyclones earned their seventh 200 medley relay victory of the year with the quartet of Emily Haan, Martha Haas, Elynn Tan and Evan Hundley, touching at 1:44.17.

In the 1000 freestyle, Haley Ruegemer continued the Cyclones’ hot start by battling back from over two seconds down at the 700-yard split to win it in the end (10:23.70). 

Freshman Emily Haan had a key win in the 100 backstroke, as she finished ahead of West Virginia freshman Ally Vannetta. She later defeated Vanneta in the 200 backstroke.

The sophomore tandem of Haas (1:04.14) and Lehr Thorson (1:05.06) added on to the early lead with a 1-2 finish in the 100 breaststroke.

By winning four of the first five events, the Cyclones held a commanding 63-30 lead.

However, West Virginia closed the gap a bit as it took victories in the 200 butterfly, the 50 freestyle and the 3 meter diving platform.

Anna Andersen was able to pull out a key victory in the 100 freestyle as she beat out Julia Nilton by .12 seconds to put the Cyclones back in a comfortable position.

Nonetheless, West Virginia took the lead after wins in the 200 breaststroke, 500 freestyle, 100 butterfly, 1 meter dive and 200 individual medley.

For the fourth time in five years, it came down to the final race to decide the outcome.  

This year, it was the Cyclones who prevailed as the 400-yard freestyle squad won the meet with a time of 3:28.07 to West Virginia’s 3:29.23.

With this win, the Cyclones are now atop the Big 12 Conference, with a chance to emerge as favorites heading into the Big 12 Championships.