By Emma Edmund on SwimSwam
Akron vs. Miami University
October 30, 2021
Oliver J. Ocasek Natatorium, Akron, Ohio
Short course yard (25 yards)
Akron W defeat Miami W 190-110 (Exhibition Aided)
In their first Mid-American Conference meet of the season, the Akron Zips women defeated the Miami Redhawks women by 80 points.
Since 2017, the two teams have competed against each other three times, and Akron has won every time. Akron’s lead over Miami has grown with each successive meet — the Zips won by 12 points in 2017 and 72 points in 2019. Last season, Akron also placed ahead of Miami at the MAC women’s championships, winning second while Miami took third.
Senior Sarah Watson led the Zips, winning two individual events and as a member of a relay. She touched first in the 200 free (1:51.39) and the 200 IM (2:04.05). She also participated in the free leg of Akron’s winning 200 medley relay (1:42.46) with a time of 22.83, alongside Madelyn Gatrall on back (26.08), Andrea Fischer on breast (28.98), and Rachel Schiffli on fly (24.57).
Watson is one of Akron’s strongest swimmers. She already earned MAC Swimmer of the Week this season after winning eight events and setting six meet records at Akron’s season opener, the Zips Classic, in mid-October. At that meet, she also earned NCAA DI B times in the 100 fly and 100 free. At this meet, Watson also touched second in the 500 free (5:02.83).
Senior Paulina Nogaj won another two individual events for the Zips, the 100 fly and 100 free. Nogaj won the free event in 51.91 and the fly in 55.35. She’s been pretty successful recently in fly events, setting a pool record at the 2021 MAC Championships in the 100 and 200 fly.
Nogaj, Watson, and junior Paige Kalik, who was MAC Diver of the Week earlier in October and won both events against Miami, are just some of the top swimmers for an Akron team that relied heavily on its upperclassmen to secure wins in this meet. Other upperclassmen who topped the podium against Miami include senior Fischer in the 100 breast (1:04.01), senior Brooke Lamoureux in the 1000 (10:29.16), junior Schiffli in the 50 free (23.67), and senior Paula Garcia in the 200 breast (2:19.87).
Akron exhibitioned swimmers throughout the meet.
Miami’s sole individual event winner was Nicole Maier, who won the 200 fly (2:01.73) and 500 free (4:56.26). Maier is a sophomore from Germany, and last season she was named MAC Freshman of the Year. At the 2021 MAC Championships, she won the 400 IM and 500 free. Though she was well off her MAC championships 500 time of 4:39.96, she was still able to defeat Akron’s senior powerhouse, Watson.
Akron and Miami split the relays, with Miami taking the 400 free relay. Led by Maier (50.82), team members Madeline Padavic (53.27), Honor Brodie-Foy (51.95), and Taylor Connors (51.34) swam the final race in 3:27.38.
Akron will return to the pool Nov. 6 against Eastern Michigan. Miami will return Nov. 13 against Oakland.
Read the full story on SwimSwam: Akron Uses Upperclassman Talent, Defeats Miami University Women
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