Hoosiers Sweep Weekly Big Ten Honors
October 23, 2003
Bloomington, Ind.- The Indiana men's and women's swimming and diving teams made it a clean sweep of the Big Ten Conference awards during the first week of the season. Senior Brooke Taflinger and freshman Colin Russell were selected the Big Ten Swimmers of the Week for the women and men, respectively, while freshman Lindsay Weigle and junior Ryan Fagan each earned the Big Ten Diver-of-the-Week honors.
Both the men and women opened the season with lopsided victories over Evansville. The women downed the Purple Aces, 183-104, while the men won, 164-116.
Taflinger led the way for the women's swim team as she claimed top times in three events. The 2003 All-American won the 200-yard breaststroke, the 400-yard IM and the 1000-yard freestyle events. Her time of 10:02.47 in the 1000 freestyle was a career best, as well as the third-fastest time in school history.
"I think Brooke started off the season well," Indiana head women's swimming coach Dorsey Tierney said. "It is not really surprising to me because she swims at such a high level on a daily basis in practice. It is certainly a well-earned honor and just continues something she has established the last few years. She has high goals, beyond on the NCAA and conference level. We are looking for some international experience. I think it is important for her to step up early and set herself on right foot for the first meet."
Russell followed suit for the men, claiming three individual wins. The Pan American Games bronze medallist won the 50-yard and 1000-yard freestyles as well as the 100-yard breaststroke. Russell's time of 9:32.73 was the 10th-fastest time in school history.
"It is a nice honor for a freshman," Indiana head men's swimming coach Ray Looze said. "In the Evansville meet, he swam in off events, or events that he would not specialize in. So, it comes as a little bit of a surprise. Colin does have some versatility and has a bright future ahead of him. If he stays consistent with his training, works hard and progresses through the season, there might be some good things for him."
"I never really expected anything like this," Russell said. "I swam like I always swim, as hard as I can. I am not used to swimming so many events as once, but I just tried to do the best I could in each event."
Fagan and Weigle claimed the Big Ten honors by winning both the one-meter and three-meter events against Evansville. The victories were the first of Fagan's and Weigle's collegiate careers. Fagan is coming off a season in which he was named the Jeff Warrick Most Improved Diver along with sophomore Brian Mariano. Weigle, a Bloomington native, won the three-meter junior national championship in both 2002 and 2003.
"I couldn't be happier," Indiana head diving coach Dr. Jeff Huber said. "They both deserve it. They are really hard working and off to a good start for this early in the season. I thought their performances were very good. Ryan was a little off, but we really didn't give him any kind of opportunity to get ready for that meet. I am very pleased. I think it is a good sign for a good year, and I think it is probably one award among many they will probably achieve this year."
Fagan easily won both of his events by over 150 points with scores of 281.77 on the one-meter and 268.27 on the three-meter. Weigle edged teammate Heather Chapman in the one-meter with a score of 273.67 and then won the three-meter by over 20 points with 255.60 points.
Weigle and Taflinger will return to action this weekend as they both travel to Dallas, Texas, as part of the women's contingent participating in the SMU Women's Swimming Classic. The Classic is Friday and Saturday night at 7:30 p.m. in the Perkins Natatorium. The other half of the Hoosier women's squad will travel to West Lafayette for the Indiana Intercollegiates. The Intercollegiates will be on Saturday starting at 12:00 p.m. in the Boilermaker Aquatics Center. The Indiana men will not return to action until next week when they travel to Tennessee and Kentucky.
Check back soon