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Iowa set to compete against Iowa

BY SHELBY STITES AND IAN MURPHY | OCTOBER 10, 2014 5:00 AM

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The Hawkeye men’s and women’s swim teams will face off against each other in the Black and Gold intrasquad meet at 9 a.m. Saturday.

Despite the teams’ close bond out of the water, the Hawkeyes will be racing each other to see who has what it takes to compete in the lineup this season.

The challenge for head coach Marc Long will be to keep his team excited and hungry.

“That’s always a challenge as a coach,” he said. “You just have to keep your eye on the prize at the end of the year.”

Long also said he is looking forward to the meet to see which captains will draft what swimmers. The Black and Gold teams will be picked by the captains, who will also set the lineups, and will compete against each other in the sprint relays and the stroke races. There will also be a divers 50 free.

He said the meet will be scored as co-ed and would last roughly 50 minutes. There will be extra emphasis on relays, as it will be a winner take all of seven points from the relay events there will be plenty of opportunity to for the teammates to race each other, which is what Long said the meet is all about.

Long will also be keeping his eyes on which freshmen can help shape this program and rebuild it into a championship team. Sophomore Emma Sougstad believes that this group of freshmen has what it takes to make it to the end of the season.

Contributions from the younger swimmers appear to be a theme for the team early in the season, Long and men’s team captain Brian Donatelli stressing the importance of the freshmen.

“Everyone wants to do well and wants to race and want to compete, I feel like that drive as a team gets us excited about everything to come,” Donatelli said. 

There are big things to come; the Hawkeyes will travel to Michigan State next week, then to Minneapolis to take on the Gophers on Halloween.

“All of them just stood up and raced,” Sougstad said after Iowa’s opening meet Oct. 4 against Big Ten rivals Michigan and Nebraska. “They stepped up and focused on beating the person next to them.”

But the freshmen can’t qualify for NCAAs alone. They will reach their goals with the help of senior captain Becky Stoughton is helping the team focus on the list of goals they set at the beginning of the season.

“We are preparing for the championship season at the end of the year,” Long said.

Follow @shelbystites and @IanfromIowa on Twitter for news, updates, and analysis about the Iowa women’s and men’s swimming and diving teams.


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