The men’s and women’s swimming and diving teams competed in the 2013 Liberal Arts & IIAC Championships last weekend in Cedar Rapids.
It was a long three-day event that featured some of the best Division III swimmers in the Midwest region. Both the men’s and women’s teams finished in the top half of the standings.
Of the 12 teams competing on the women’s side, the Duhawks finished second in the Liberal Arts Championship, while the men finished fifth among 10 teams.
In the IIAC Championship—which is decided by where the four Iowa Conference schools place in the Liberal Arts Championship — Loras finished second on both the men’s and women’s side behind perennial juggernaut Luther College.
The women improved from last year’s championship where they took fourth of 13 teams.
“(We had) a consistent performance,
everybody came in and had good time drops, held their places, moved up their spots,” said Coach Doug Colin. “They were pretty aware that they were in a battle for second. First place was pretty well gone, but they wanted that second place and they worked hard to get it.”
A few Duhawks on the men’s side stood out and turned in great performances in the championship as well.
“We had four conference champions: John Maevski on both boards, Matt Bogen in the 1,650 free and Zach Benson in the 250 breaststroke,” said Colin.
Bogen also finished third in the 500 and runner-up in the 200 freestyle in the IIAC. Benson was the runner-up in both the 200 individual medley and the 100 breaststroke.
Colin also recognized the swimmers on the women’s side who helped secure the Duhawks second-place finish.
Junior Katie Callaghan finished second place in both the Liberal Arts and the Iowa Conference in both butterflies, the 100 and 200.
The Duhawks also finished third in the 200 medley relay which consisted of Marguerite Del Vecchio, Lexie Moilahan, Katie Callaghan and Jillyn Gerken. The 800-freestyle-relay team of Lexie Mollahan, Elise Amo, Gabby Gaulke and Heather Black turned in a second-place finish as well.
With the season coming to a close, the Duhawks set their sights on the offseason.
“It will start with strength and conditioning here in a couple weeks. I can’t have contact with the team, but there will be work outs on the board for them to start working towards next year, and then hopefully they’ll have a good summer of staying in shape and getting stronger.”