Marquette sinks Houghton swimmers

HOUGHTON – It went down to the wall, but the Marquette girls out-touched Houghton on the scoreboard Thursday, winning their dual meet 97-89.

Houghton carried the lead into the last individual event, the 100-yard breaststroke, where the Redettes finished 1-2-3 led by double winner Katy Beckstrom. Beckstrom then anchored Marquette to a comfortable win in the 400 free relay to seal the victory. Even then, had Houghton, anchored by double winner Rebecca Jaszczak, won the final relay, the result would have been a tie.

“Marquette is always such a tough team, the talent, the depth, to swim them so close on the girl’s side was amazing. We had some girls swimming in the A relays or in events that they typically don’t swim and they really stepped up and raced,” Houghton coach Roger Woods said.

Jaszczak swam to comfortable victories in the 50 free (27.27 seconds) and 100 back (1:10.33). She was joined in the winner’s circle by diver Alina Ryynanen (154.8 pts.), Annika Wheeler (1:13.67 in the 100 fly) and two relay teams.

On the boys’ side, Houghton won a majority of the races, but Marquette’s superior depth carried it to a 109-76 decision.

“The boys really lacked the depth tonight to compete with a talented Marquette boys team. We did see some improvements in times and the boys doing a better job at the little things that will make a huge difference later in the season,” Woods said.

Daniel Shonnard swept the freestyle sprints for the Gremlins, taking the 50 in 23.99 and the 100 in 52.41. Other winners included Drew Meyer (2:01.88 in the 200 free), Nikita Velat (178.8 pts., diving), James DeClerck (5:23.54 in the 500 free) and the 200 free relay team.

“Overall I was pleased with where we are at this point in the season, we have a couple busy weeks, but this loss should give the team some additional motivation,” Woods said.

Houghton swims again at the Houghton Splash Saturday.