Online Exclusive: Swimmers make splash at Calvin Invite

Dustin Anand

The Northern Michigan University swimming and diving team finished strong in the three-day Calvin Invite in Grand Rapids, Mich. Saturday, Dec. 1.

The meet was against 12 teams from three different divisions. Few schools such as Valparaiso University, Calvin College, University of Indianapolis, Grand Valley State University and Hillsdale College were among the competition. The ’Cats finished second place.

“The Calvin Invite was a really good benchmark meet for our season,” said sophomore Jordan Iverson.“The Calvin Invite allowed us to swim against some of the teams that we will see at our conference meet in February; this meet was a prelims and finals format, so it was good training for conference.”

Iverson swam the 1650-yard freestyle, 500-yard freestyle and the 400-yard IM. Iverson set a pool and meet record time in the 400-yard IM.

“The atmosphere was really motivating,” Iverson said. “It was great to swim and dive in front of a big crowd, and it really pushed us to do our best in the pool. The atmosphere was really motivating. The competition is really fierce at the Calvin Invite.

Head coach Heidi Voigt was pleased with her team’s performance and felt the training really paid off this past weekend.

“I was very pleased to see how close we were to Grand Valley,” Voigt said. “I think we can give them a run at GLIAC champs. We finished second, our highest finish at that meet.”

Voigt likes how the sophomore class has stepped up this year and how the team is cooperating together.

“Our relays were significantly better and everyone came through to place in the top 16 to score,” Voigt said. “Our senior leadership is excellent and they will be missed next year.”

The ’Cats felt they accomplished a lot at the competition and feels that this is a big step toward Nationals.

“We competed against some great teams, especially Grand Valley State University and the University of Indianapolis who ended up sixth and 11th respectively at the Division II Nationals meet last March,” Iverson said. “The highlights for this weekend were the number of girls that achieved preliminary qualifying times for Nationals in March.”

The ’Cats are undefeated in dual meets and feels confident in their team for the GLIAC Championship in February.

“I think this year our team has more confidence and we are seeing that our hard work pays off,” Iverson said. “It is a really tight knit group of girls, and we enjoy pushing each other in practice to achieve the goals our team has set.”

The ’Cats have won all their match-ups thus far and placed second out of four teams in the St. Cloud Invite.

The ’Cats have a break from competition as they don’t hit the pool again until they compete in the San Juan Invite on Sunday, Jan. 6. in San Juan, Puerto Rico.