Badgers splash past Huskie crew

By Brian Wiencek

The NIU men’s and women’s swimming and diving teams ran into a brick wall on their first road trip of the young 1992-93 season.

That brick wall was the University of Wisconsin as the Badgers upended the men’s team 131-85, while the women’s side fell 154-88 in Madison, Wis., Tuesday night.

The NIU men’s team led 17-13 after the first two events but finished fourth, fifth and sixth in the 200-yard freestyle. From there, Wisconsin never looked back.

The Huskies (1-2) managed to scrape up only two first-place finishes, care of the 400-yard medley relay team of Hobe Scholz, Ben Bell, Jarod Schroeder, and Craig Hammett (3:38.28), Bell, again, in the 200-yard breaststroke (2:16.82) and Scholz, again, in the 200-yard backstroke (1:59.12).

Freshman Tony D’Amico had a season-high 278.32, good for third place in the one-meter dive and another season high of 279.15, good for second place in the three-meter dive.

Senior Matt Mersman also improved his season-best in one-meter competition with a 272.50, good for fourth place, while finishing third in the three-meter dive with a 257.62.

The NIU women’s team suffered its first loss of the year to fall to 2-1. The Wisconsin Badgers won eight of the 12 events.

Kristin Scholz spoiled the Badgers’ party with two first-place finishes. Scholz stole first place in the 50-yard freestyle (21.50) and the 200-yard backstroke (2:11.29). The last two first-place finishes came from Janine Bytnar in the 200-yard butterfly (2:10.53) and Karen Hansen in the 1,000-yard freestyle (2:33.69).

The meet was bad news from the start as the closest that NIU came to taking the lead was after the first event when the Huskies were down by 13 points (15-2).

Divers Amy Inselberger, Margaret Turner and Jen Anderson finished Nos. 2, 3 and 4, respectively, in one-meter competition, and Inselberger came back in the three-meter to place second again.

Despite suffering such a loss, it, obviously, will not count toward the Huskies’ Mid-Continent Conference ledgers.

“We were very consistent with our times, and we showed some improvement,” NIU swimming coach Jeanne Fleck said. “It’s good to swim against a team like that. We went in and swam up to our level. We weren’t intimidated.”