Ohio State Makes Only Home Meet of Season Count with Sweep of Penn State

ohio state buckeyes dive start focus
Photo Courtesy: The Ohio State University Athletics

In its only home meet of the shortened season, Ohio State picked up a pair of wins Saturday, downing Penn State by scores of 163.5-134.5 in the men’s competition and 157-141 in the women’s meet.

The meet, which served as senior day for 21 Buckeyes across the two programs, was its first meet since the 2020 Big Ten Championships, in which the men were runner-up and the women took home the title.

“It’s been 10 months since we competed and, my goodness, that felt good just to be able to compete,” coach Bill Dorenkott said in a university release. “I want to thank Gene Smith and everyone in our athletics department who worked so hard to make today a reality. We talk about hope and opportunity around here. Today showed that those are more than words if you are a Buckeye.”

The women’s meet was the more entertaining affair, with eight lead changes. The Buckeyes’ depth served them well, despite Penn State winning more individual events. Ohio State didn’t take the lead for good until Mackenzie Crawford competed her diving sweep in the one-meter event. She, Lexie Barker and Ciera McGing went 1-2-3 in both events.

Sally Tafuto opened by winning the 1,000 freestyle in a 1-2-3 finish, then led the way to victory in the 500 free. Ohio State sealed the win in the 400 free relay, the squad of Katherine Zenick, Taylor Petrak, Freya Rayner and Amy Fulmer clocking in at 3:20.71. The latter three had recorded a 1-2-3 finish in the 100 free, Petrak winning in 50.74.

Josie Panitz also won the 200 breaststroke for OSU.

Penn State earned plenty of wins, but didn’t put enough points behind them. Marie Schobel won the 100 and 200 backstroke, and Brooke Mathias claimed the 100 and 200 butterfly.

Sadie Schumann (200 free), Carly Hart (100 breast), Maddie Cooke (50 free) and Margaret Markvardt (200 IM) also registered wins.

Charlie Clark got the Ohio State men out to a quick start by winning the 1,000 freestyle in 9:07.90, part of a 1-2-3 result. He doubled up on wins in the 500 free. With that and twin 1-2-3 finishes in the diving events, paced by Joseph Canova, Jacob Fielding and Jacob Siler in order, the Buckeyes were in control the whole way.

Paul Delakis won the 200 free and Jason Mathews claimed the 100 breaststroke for Ohio State. The 100 free ended in a tie, with Penn State’s Will Roberson and Ohio State’s Hunter Armstrong both touching in 44.62.

Penn State won both relays. Zac Zwijacz swept the fly events, as did Michael Daly in backstroke. Roberson added an ourtright win in the 50 free, and Daniel Raisanen (200 breast) and Hayden Harlow (200 IM) tried to spark a late charge with wins.

Also at the meet, Rutgers diver Jenna Douglass placed fifth in the one-meter diving with a score of 273.40, good to qualify for the NCAA Zone meet. It was within .05 points of the South African’s career best.

Douglass also scored 250.85 to take eight on three-meter.

“Despite being out for two months, Jenna never gave up,” head diving coach Frederick Woodruff said. “She trained everyday doing what she was allowed to do keeping herself ready to start diving again at a high level. She dove an incredibly consistent event considering it was her first meet since March. I’m so proud of her.”

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