COLUMBUS, Ohio, January 23. THE Ohio State women's swimming and diving team held a three-point lead halfway through the meet and trailed No. 22 Michigan by just one point 12 events in, but the Wolverines fought back to win an exciting, 169.5-129.5, competition over the Buckeyes Friday at Canham Natatorium in Ann Arbor, Mich.
"We swam well and we competed well," Ohio State coach Bill Dorenkott said. "We took our fair share of races but, more importantly, we swam tough as a team. We won races that came down to a touch and by far it was our best effort of the year."
The Buckeyes were led by two wins apiece from sophomore Samantha Cheverton and junior Colleen Schweitzer with freshman Natalie Nichols and sophomore diver Katie Bell also picking up wins for the Scarlet and Gray.
Nichols won the 1,000-yard freestyle in a team season-best time of 10:10.26 to lead a one-two Ohio State finish in the second race of the night. Haley Mitchell was second in 10:10.92.
Cheverton followed with another season's-best time and win in the 200 freestyle in 1:48.44 and two races later Schweitzer picked up her first win of the night in the 100 breaststroke in 1:04.68. Cheverton then came right back to win the 200 butterfly in 2:01.28, good for another season's-best time.
A one-two finish on platform by Ohio State divers Bell and Kristen Asman pulled the Buckeyes into the lead, 76.5-73.5, after the eighth of 16 events on the evening. The two sophomores outscored the Michigan divers, 13-6, on the tower as Bell won her first event of the season.
Michigan regained the lead after the next race. Leigh Cole held off Ohio State freshman Lisa Narum to win the 100 freestyle in 51.69 to give the Wolverines an 86.5 to 82.5 lead. Narum touched the wall second in 51.93. It was the first of two runner-up finishes for Narum as she was second in the 200 individual medley in 2:05.43 later in the meet.
Cheverton and junior tri-captain Jill Lockhart finished second and third, respectively, in the 200 backstroke to keep the meet close through 10 events and when Schweitzer and sophomore Katelyn Brix went one-two in the next event – the 200 breaststroke – the Buckeyes had regained the lead by six points. Schweitzer's time of 2:19.76 was another Ohio State season-best.
Michigan came back, though, behind wins in the final four races to claim the victory and improve their record to 2-6 overall against a schedule that has included six dual meets against teams in the Top 10 of the dual meet rankings. Ohio State falls to 4-3 overall and 0-2 vs. the Big Ten.
Asman picked up a second second-place finish, on the one-meter springboard, and sophomore Anita Beck took second in the 500 freestyle to help the Buckeyes' cause.
Special thanks to Ohio State for contributing this report.