Takeaways: Cyclones rise and fall in double meet weekend

Sophomore Jazlyn Horras takes her start for the 100 back event Friday. Iowa State won the meet with South Dakota 212-84.

Megan Teske

The Iowa State swimming and diving team took care of South Dakota Friday evening, but couldn’t overcome a close matchup against Rutgers the next morning. 

In a back-to-back meet weekend, the Cyclones competed against South Dakota on Friday evening and won 212-84. Saturday, they fell to Rutgers in a closer-than-it-appeared meet, 134-166.

Head coach Duane Sorenson said he doesn’t think the loss to Rutgers had anything to do with having a meet the night before because Rutgers also had a meet the evening before in which they lost to the University of Iowa 199-100.

The little details

The Cyclones were on pace with Rutgers in each event for the entirety of the meet, sometimes missing out on first or second place by tenths or hundredths of a second. When final scores can come down to less than a second, it’s important for swimmers to not only focus on the race, but also the little things that can help them get that extra push.

“We had way too many close races,” Sorenson said. “Unfortunately we didn’t pull out the close touchouts we should have done at home.”

One of the swimmers who won because of a minute detail was junior Martha Haas in the 200 yard breaststroke. In the last length, Haas was slightly behind Rutgers swimmer Aleksa Ignatova, but overtook her on the turn and ended up placing first.

“Their [Rutger’s] swimmer took that little extra stroke at the end,” Sorenson said. “Martha went underwater and their swimmer went over the water and [Martha] ended up winning it.”

Sorenson also said the athletes were trying too hard and needed to trust in themselves to win the race.

“When you’re in this sport and try harder, sometimes you don’t do better,” Sorenson said. “Just trusting themselves and staying under control and trusting their stroke and their pace and their tempo, they can go a lot further.”

Just keep swimming

Sorenson said Iowa State had good performances both meets, but they just weren’t able to finish against Rutgers like they did South Dakota. He also reiterated how the swimmers need to relax and just swim.

“They’re trying to put too much on their shoulders,” Sorenson said. “Some of them swam events and they just went out and had fun [Friday night] and they swam faster. Just learning how to attack the races in the right way and right mindset.”

Sorenson said it was a mix of being able to have fun in the meet as well as locking in and racing to win. 

Cyclones win the meter dive

In both meets this weekend, the Cyclone divers performed and placed well in the 1-meter diving event. 

Against South Dakota, Iowa State took the top three spots. Sophomore Michelle Schlossmacher Smith placed first, freshman Jayna Misra placed second, and senior Dana Liva placed third. All three divers earned an NCAA zone qualifying score in that meet as well. 

The Cyclones also did well on the 1-meter dive against Rutgers, placing first and second. Schlossmacher Smith again took first and Liva took second. 

“I was very consistent in all of my dives,” Schlossmacher Smith said. “That’s mainly what I’m looking for this time of the season.”

Diving coach Jeff Warrick said he was happy with how his divers did this weekend in both meets.

“I think we’re going to take away that we’re a strong team,” Warrick said. “If we put our minds to it and keep working we’re going to be in the mix, we’re going to be shooting for winning these competitions.”

The diving team now has two weeks off for practice until they go to the Mizzou Invite, which is Nov. 21 to 23.

“I’m really excited to go compete at an invite,” Schlossmacher Smith said. “It’s a lot different of an atmosphere, more teams and a lot longer wait time.”

While the divers will be down in Columbia, Missouri, for the Mizzou Invite from Nov. 21 to 23, the Iowa State swimmers will be down in Topeka, Kansas, for the Kansas Classic from Nov. 22 to 24. 

Iowa State’s next home meet will be Dec. 13, when the Cyclones face off against the Iowa Hawkeyes in the annual Iowa Corn Cy-Hawk Series.