Oct. 16, 2013
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. -- Purdue women's swimming and diving along with the divers from the men's team begin their new campaigns Friday with the annual early-season dual meet against Miami (Ohio).
Action begins at 6 p.m. at the Nixon Aquatic Center in Oxford, Ohio. The men's diving scores will carry over to the Friday, Nov. 22 Purdue-Miami men's dual at the Boilermaker Aquatic Center.
Student-athletes from both Purdue teams are also scheduled to participate in Saturday's Breaststroke 4 Hope swim-a-thon at the Boilermaker Aquatic Center. The fundraising event begins at noon Saturday. Online lap donations are also being accepted through Breaststroke4Hope.com.
The Purdue women have competed against Miami in dual meet action in each of the last six seasons dating back to 2007-08. The Miami dual has been an annual home-and-home part of the schedule along with other regular head-to-head opponents like Notre Dame, Northwestern, Michigan State and Indiana.
Allie Davis (500 and 1000 free), Carly Mercer (100 and 200 free) and Rhiannon Sheets (100 and 200 fly) were two-time winners in the dual meet victory against Miami last season at the Boilermaker Aquatic Center. Among returning Boilers, Francesca Marr (200 IM) and MacKenzie Tweardy (1-meter diving) also posted an individual victory vs. Miami a year ago.
Among the men's divers, Layne Rogers swept the springboard diving events against Miami last year in his collegiate debut. The Purdue men return all five divers from last year's team, with Alec Back, Jamie Bissett, Nate Cox, Sean Mokhtari joining Rogers on the roster again.
Two years ago in Oxford, Sheets won the 100 fly and Mercer contributed to each of Purdue's relay wins.
The Boilermakers have welcomed back six student-athletes that qualified for the 2013 NCAA Championships, including 3-meter diving national champion Casey Matthews. Michelle Cabassol was also a 3-meter All-America honoree a season ago. Among the swimmers, Nika Carlina Petric joins Davis, Mercer and Sheets as Boilers that got a chance to experience the national championship meet environment last year.
Bissett and Rogers also represented the Purdue men at the 2013 NCAA Championships, both earning Honorable Mention All-America acclaim.
This summer, returning Boilers Lizzy Lyon, Kylie Vogel, Alex Todd, Davis, Mercer and Sheets qualified for the U.S. Open in Southern California. Lyon, Mercer, Sheets and Todd teamed up to help Purdue medal in the 800 free relay by placing second in their heat and eighth overall.
Eight new swimmers have joined the Boilermakers this season, many of whom should make their collegiate debuts either Friday at Miami or next Saturday at the Indiana Intercollegiates meet at the Boilermaker Aquatic Center.
The Miami women are the defending Mid-American Conference champions. After six years as an assistant coach in Oxford, Mark Davis took over the reins of the RedHawks' program from retiring head coach Dave Jennings this summer. Miami lost 13 seniors to graduation but was selected as the favorite in MAC by the league coaches. The RedHawks also open their new season this weekend.