TUCSON, Ariz. -- The Rice swimmers opened 2018 by winning two of the three simultaneous dual meets at the Arizona Wildcat Quad Meet Friday afternoon in Tucson, Ariz.
In the team scoring the Owls defeated both Northern Arizona (171.5 – 122.5) and New Mexico State (217-77). Meet host Arizona, the No. 12 ranked team in the country, topped Rice 151-121 for the 14 swim events and two springboard diving events (in which the Owls do not compete).
The Rice senior tandem of Alicia Caldwell and Kaitlyn Swinney both won individual events in the 100-freestyle (50.96) and 400-individual medley (4:17.86), respectively. Rice head coach Seth Huston liked what he saw of the Owls returning after a long break from the Holidays.
“The team swam great today,” coach Huston said. “Where we’re at in training, finishing out a cycle, we expected a lot. We really wanted to get out and race and we accomplished that. We were definitely a little fatigued, but that may have been the case for everyone at this meet.
“Alicia had a great meet,” Huston explained. “The 100-free and 200-free (1:50.48) were really strong swims for her right now. I was really proud of Kaitlyn in that 400-IM at the end of the meet. That was her best-ever in a training suit. I also liked Lauren Rhodes in the 50-free (23.77). Nicole Limberg and Kelsey Evans really stepped-up and had some strong breaststroke swims . It was encouraging to see them get up and race and perform really well.”
Rice next heads to Phoenix to swim in the Grand Canyon University Quad Meet meet with Cal Baptist and New Mexico State (for a second time in as many days against the Lobos).