NOTRE DAME, Ind., Jan. 19. THE University of Notre Dame women's swimming and diving team improved to 5-1-1 in dual meet action for the 2002-03 season with a 192.5 – 172.5 win over Illinois in Champaign this afternoon.
There was no men's meet as Illinois killed off its men's program a decade ago.
The Irish entered the second day of competition (which also included Michigan, though Notre Dame and the Wolverines were not competing against each other in terms of points) with a lead over the Illini (64-46) but ended up dropping some points to the home team with a third-place finish in the 200 medley relay to begin the second day of competition.
Marie Labosky came back to get Notre Dame on track in the 400 IM, winning her second event of the meet in 4:26.71. Illinois cut into the Irish lead some more with a victory over Notre Dame in the 200 freestyle and 100 breaststroke before Danielle Hulick brought home a win in the 100 backstroke (57.05). Although Hulick's victory was a positive, Illinois was able to finish second, third and fourth to shrink the Notre Dame lead even more.
Junior diver Meghan Perry-Eaton came through with her second diving victory of the meet, winning the three-meter event with 586.43 points.
Illinois refused to relent, however, winning the 800 freestyle relay and touching first in the 1650 freestyle to keep the pressure on Notre Dame.
Hulick and Labosky finished first and second (compared to Illinois) in the 200 backstroke to provide a bit more breathing room and Heidi Hendrick contributed a victory in the 100 freestyle (53.06) to re-establish the Notre Dame advantage.
Illinois went on to defeat Notre Dame in the 200 fly, but the 400 freestyle relay team of Sarah Alwen, Hulick, Kristen Peterson and Hendrick touched the wall ahead of Illinois in the final event to secure the win for the Irish.
Notre Dame will be back in action Saturday, Jan. 25, at Bowling Green against the Falcons, Saint Louis and Louisville.