Nov. 30, 2006

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COLUMBUS, Ohio – The Ohio State women’s swimming and diving team plays host at the second annual Ohio State Swimming and Diving Invitational this weekend at the McCorkle Aquatic Pavilion. The Buckeyes enter the meet coming off of a win against the Toledo Rockets, 170-119, Nov. 17. The women now are 3-1 for the season and 2-1 in the Big Ten.

Ohio State will welcome 12 swimming and diving teams during the three-day competition, including six women’s swimming teams. Five more universities only will compete in the diving portion of the meet. Universities participating in the competition are South Carolina, Arkansas, Utah, Iowa, Bowling Green and Denver. The University of Alabama and Arizona State also will compete in the diving portion of the meet.

The preliminary session Friday will begin at 11 a.m., with the Top 18 swimmers returning to compete at 6 p.m. Diving preliminaries will be held between swimming sessions at 2 p.m. Saturday, swimmers will begin competition at 10 a.m. and finals at 5 p.m., while diving action starts at 1 p.m. The Invitational concludes Sunday, with racing at 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. The qualifying round for divers kicks off at noon.

Final competition will consist of three eight-person heats. Team relays also will be swum in the evening. The Top 16 finishers in both individual and relay events will score points. For live scoring, a full schedule of events and directions to the McCorkle Aquatic Pavilion please visit Admission to every session is free. Heat sheets are available at each session for $2.

Ohio State finished in third place at last year’s Invitational with 472 points behind Minnesota and Penn State. The women recorded eight NCAA `B’ cuts through out the three-day competition. Junior Griet Buelens was responsible for two of those qualifying standards, swimming the 1,650-yard freestyle in 16:43.08 and 4:52.39 in the 500-yard freestyle. Senior Gulsah Gunenc also posted a `B’ cut in the 200-yard butterfly.

Ohio State dominated the dual with the Rockets, as the Buckeyes swam the fastest time in every event. The women swept the breaststroke events, claiming the Top 3 spots in both the 100- and 200-yard distances. Griet Buelens was a triple-event winner, stopping the clock first in the 200- and 500-yard freestyle, as well as the 200-yard butterfly. Gulsah Gunenc also recorded multiple wins at the meet, touching in first in both the 100-yard backstroke and butterfly. Julie Broms extended her undefeated record to 4-0 on the 3 meter, winning in a score of 308.92

Griet Buelens and Gulsah Gunenc are already one step closer to competing at the 2007 NCAA Championships in Minneapolis, Minn. Both women recorded NCAA `B’ cuts in the 200-yard butterfly at Ohio State’s intrasquad meet. Buelens swam a time of 2:01.79 while Gunenc finished in 2:01.85. Gunenc further secured her spot at the championship meet when she lowered her time by two-tenths to post a winning time 2:01.65 in the dual-meet against Illinois.

Several swimmers already have recorded personal best times despite being in just the third week of competition. Freshman Haley Mitchell opened her collegiate career with a best time of 10:14.72 in the 1,000-yard freestyle at the Scarlet and Gray meet. Buelens claimed a win for the Buckeyes in the same event at Michigan when she stopped the clock in her best time of 10:04.55.

Ohio State opened its season with a conference dual-meet win against Illinois, 157-143, Nov. 4. The Buckeyes took seven of the 14 events swum, as well as sweeping both the 1- and 3-meter diving events. Gulsah Gunenc claimed two wins in both butterfly events, while junior Griet Buelens placed second in two freestyle events and first in the 500-yard freestyle (4:56.65). The remaining three individual wins came from freshmen Haley Mithcell, Megan Alexander and Jill Lockhart. Chelsea Davis and Julie Broms were each responsible for wins in diving.

Ohio State fell, 138-99, No. 10 Michigan in Ann Arbor, Friday Nov. 10. The Buckeyes won three events, sweeping the first three places on the 3-meter springboard. Julie Broms picked up her second win for the season in the event. Griet Buelens also recorded a win for the team when she swam a lifetime best time of 10:04.55 in the 1,000-yard freestyle.

The Buckeyes bounced back from their loss to overtake Michigan State, 153-90, Saturday winning 11 of the 13 events. Diver Julie Broms extended her undefeated record on the 3-meter to 3-0 for the year. Swimmers Annie Rennebohm and Farriss Blaskovits each claimed their first collegiate Big Ten win. Gulsah Gunenc, Griet Buelens and Elaine Chan were responsible for the team’s remaining individual wins.

COACH Jeanne Fleck
Head women’s swimming coach Jeanne Fleck is in her eighth season at the helm of the Ohio State women’s swimming program. She has become accustomed to her teams displaying excellence in the water and in the classroom throughout her coaching career.

Last season, Fleck coached the first swimmer since 1995 to All-American status. During her tenure at Ohio State she has geared the Buckeyes to 11 school records. The Buckeyes had the highest grade point average in the Big Ten Conference in 2004 and was ranked ninth in the country during fall quarter of 2003. In six seasons, Fleck has had 48 Academic All-Big Ten selections and 89 OSU Scholar-Athletes.

Vince Panzano is in his 28th season as coach of the Ohio State men’s and women’s diving teams. Panzano, who was named the 2004 Big Ten Diving Coach of the Year for the eighth time in his career, has produced one world champion, one junior world champion, two Olympic medalists, 22 U.S. Diving champions, ten NCAA champions, 14 NCAA runners-up, 45 Big Ten champions and 68 NCAA All-Americans.

Following the holiday break, the women will travel to Athens to take on Ohio University, Jan. 6 at 1 p.m.

### GO BUCKS! ###