Dec. 11, 2013
NOTRE DAME Ind. - Another week was met with another sweep for the University of Notre Dame women's swimming and diving team as junior swimmer Emma Reaney and sophomore diver Lindsey Streepey have received recognition from the Atlantic Coast Conference after the Irish went to Iowa City and dominated the competition to win the 2013 Hawkeye Invitational.
Reaney, who was named ACC Women's Swimmer of the Week, has now earned four of the 10 weekly awards given out during the fall season, which bumps her total to 10 weekly scrolls in three seasons between the BIG EAST and ACC.
In Iowa, Reaney had another record-setting meet as she broke her own school record in the 200 breast (2:05.85) and clinched her spot at the 2014 NCAA Championships with NCAA A cuts in the 200 breast and 200 IM (1:55.65). The Lawrence, Kan., native also broke several meet and pool records on her way to winning six events and finishing second in two others.
"It feels really nice to have those (A cuts) out of the way before break," said Reaney. "It takes a little pressure off conference and now I can just focus on swimming fast and not think about specific times too much."
In the latest NCAA time rankings, Reaney is the top ranked performer in the country in the 200 breast (2:05.85) and isn't far behind in the 100 breast (59.22) and 200 IM (1:55.18) as she is sixth in both.
A couple of days after the meet, Reaney was still excited about her swim in the 200 breast, which puts her ahead of some Olympic-level competition.
"My strength has improved a lot even since the summer so Brian (head coach Brian Barnes) and I are working on stroke counts and things like that and everything really fell into place for the 200," said Reaney. "I knew it was a school record since it was my best time, but I didn't know that it was the top collegiate time so far this year until yesterday (Monday). I'm really learning to love that event!"
Streepey, who was selected ACC Women's Diver of the Week, continued her very steady season on the boards by placing in the top three in all three diving disciplines in Iowa. She took second in the 3-meter (330.25) and third in the 1-meter (289.25) and platform (241.55).
"During my freshman year I was focused more on getting back in the water after being out for half a year after wrist surgery," said Streepey. "This year I have really been able to focus on improving my dives and the consistency of them during practice. I have also felt more comfortable and confident when competing because I know what to expect and I know what mindset I need to have to compete consistently."
The most impressive finish of the three for Streepey had to be the platform, which the Notre Dame divers rarely get to practice since Rolfs Aquatic Center doesn't feature a diving tower.
"Competing in platform is definitely a mental obstacle because we only get to practice it a few times the entire season," said Streepey. "Because of that, it's hard to forget that you're coming into that event at a disadvantage. Thankfully all three of us have a background in platform diving so we were able to do our dives consistently, not only in prelims but also in finals. We always think of platform as an event to have fun in so we were able to relax, which is one of the main reasons that we were successful.
With the weekly honor, the Dallas, Texas native joins teammate Allison Casareto (Nov. 19) in helping the Irish win two of the eight diving awards given out this season.
Halfway through the season, Casareto, Streepey and sophomore Emma Gaboury have all already qualified for the NCAA Zone Diving meet in the three disciplines.
After four consecutive dual meet wins and an eight-team invitational title in Iowa, Notre Dame (4-3) has finally moved into the rankings (No. 25) in the latest CSCAA Coaches Poll, which was released Wednesday morning.
"I'd say especially after this past weekend, the team is incredibly excited as a whole for the rest of the season," said Reaney. "It was great to watch girls have breakout performances and I think this weekend proved to ourselves and other teams that we are emerging onto the national stage and that we're here to stay. We're past the hardest part of the season and we can't wait for training trip and championship season."
"I think winning our recent meets has made everyone excited for championship season," added Streepey. "After our wins against the ACC teams (Pitt and Virginia Tech), it has given our team a confidence boost and made them realize that we will be able to do well at the ACC Championships."
The Irish are done with competition for the fall semester, but get back to action Jan. 11 when they head to Evanston, Ill., to meet Big Ten foes Michigan and Northwestern in a double dual meet.
2013-14 ACC Weekly Honorees
Swimmer of the Week
Oct. 15 - Emma Reaney
Nov. 5 - Emma Reaney
Nov. 19 - Emma Reaney
Dec. 10 - Emma Reaney
Diver of the Week
Nov. 19 - Allison Casareto
Dec. 10 - Lindsey Streepey
-- Russell Dorn, Assistant Media Relations Director