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Rutgers travels to north west for quad-meet

The Rutgers swimming and diving team travels to Columbus, Ohio this weekend, for its second meet of the new year. There, they will compete in a quad-meet against Virginia Tech, Michigan and host team, Ohio State. 

The Scarlet Knights hope to get back on track on Saturday, after suffering a 145-98 loss to Yale at home last week to start off 2018.

Co-head coach Jon Maccoll is looking forward to the meet and is hoping to use it as a test run before the Big Ten Championships.

“It’s the second to last meet before the Big Ten Championships, so we’re using this as a tune up for that,” Maccoll said. “We’re having our swimmers treat this as if it was the Big Ten.”

The meet will mark the first time that Rutgers has travelled to Columbus since the 2014-2015 season, when the Big Ten Championships were held at Ohio State. 

There are several Knights who are looking to continue their standout seasons in Columbus this weekend, including senior Addison Walkowiak, who has had a phenomenal season on the diving board. 

Walkowiak has been on a tear this season, breaking her own record on the 1-meter board multiple times this season. Last month, she was named the Big Ten Diver of the Week, the sixth time she has been given the award. And just last week against Yale, she placed first in both the 1-meter and 3-meter events. 

Nonetheless, Walkowiak has certainly not been the only Knight who has had a strong season. 

Diving juniors Rachel Byrne and Marin Bloise and freshman Lauren Boone are all coming off very strong performances last week against the Bulldogs and hope to continue their success in the quad-meet this week.

In the swimming pool, sophomore Francesca Bertotto and junior Vera Koprivova hope to continue their strong seasons well into the new year. 

Last week, Bertotto, who is the the team’s long-distance specialist, tapped in first in both the 1000-yard freestyle and the 500-yard freestyle. Meanwhile, Koprivova placed first in the 200-yard individual medley and the 100-yard backstroke.

Rutgers has undoubtedly faced a lot of adversity this season, including changing head coaches at the beginning of the season. But when asked about how the team has overcome this issue, Maccoll was very quick to praise the team for their character.

“They’ve been unbelievable and it is a true testament to their character how well they’ve handled it,” Maccoll said. “There’s this cliche about the process and how it drives everything, and in this case it’s true. Their character and dedication have been the key to all of this. I haven’t had anybody show up late since the beginning of the year. And it’s because of their character that they have had this success.”

For updates on the Rutgers swimming and diving team, follow @TargumSports on Twitter.

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