Walkowiak streak ends as Rutgers returns from successful meet in Ohio

The Rutgers swimming and diving team traveled to Columbus, Ohio this weekend for a quad-meet against No. 2 Michigan, No. 24 Virginia Tech and No. 11 Ohio State, who hosted the event at the McCorkle Aquatic Pavilion.

The Pavilion will serve as the site for the Big Ten Championships in February and the NCAA Championships later in March. 

There were multiple standout Scarlet Knights during the meet, but none more so than senior diver Addison Walkowiak, who proved victorious in the 1-meter diving event with a score 312.83 in a field of 16. This marked her 10th victory of a marvelous run this season. Junior diver Rachel Byrne placed sixth in the same event with a score of 255.23.

Later in the 3-meter events, Walkowiak saw her four-event win streak at the 3-meter event come to an end, when she placed as the runner-up with a score of 254.55. Byrne finished fifth with a mark of 226.65.

Co-head coach Fredrick Woodruff could not be more enthused than he was about Walkowiak’s performance and season in general.

“I was very pleased with Addy,” Woodruff said. “A strong group of divers they were up against and was a very deep contest to go up against. And Addy took it all in stride. I was just really proud of her. (sic)”

On the swim side of the meet, sophomore Francesca Bertotto finished seventh in the 1000-yard freestyle and 10th in a pool of 20 in the 500-yard freestyle. 

Sophomore Clare Lawlor had an impressive performance in the 50-yard freestyle, finishing 10th with a time of 24.14 — only 1 second behind the third-place finisher, the Wolverines' Gabby DeLoof, the reigning Big Ten Swimmer of the Week.

Fellow sophomore Federica Greco finished eighth the 200-yard freestyle, tapping in with a time of 2:02.64.

Overall, Woodruff was very pleased with the performance Rutgers had over the weekend, and believed it to be a stepping stone for the Big Ten Championship.

“This was our time to solidify things and become as consistent as possible,” Woodruff said. “We were all trying to tie up loose ends and really be consistent in our approach. What I was really happy with was that we were able to compete at Ohio State and to get used to the atmosphere and the environment for the Big Ten. Overall, I feel the preparation is going very well.”

The Knights’ last meet before the Big Ten Championships comes at home next week, when Rutgers hosts Nebraska at the Rutgers Aquatics Center on Friday and Saturday.

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

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