Kelly Straub’s Diving Record Has Notre Dame Ahead of West Virginia

Photo Courtesy: Peter H. Bick

Kelly Straub set the Notre Dame platform diving record, her second straight week with a program record, as the Fighting Irish lead West Virginia after day one of a two-day meet. The No. 18 men’s team has a commanding 141-45 lead, while the 18th-ranked women are up 99-67.

Straub scored 273.45 points to earn the win, bettering the score of 267.35 set in 2014 by Lindsey Streepy. Teammate Annie Wiese was second, also ahead of the record with a tally of 273.38. West Virginia freshman Sara Haggerty set a Mountaineers’ record with a score of 269.33 to take second place, besting the mark she set on Jan. 13 (254.03).

Straub last week set the one-meter record at the Shamrock Invitational, downing the mark of 340.35 set in 2012 by Jenny Chiang.

Madeline LaPorte started the effort on the women’s side for Notre Dame by winning the 500 freestyle in 4:50.85. Rachel Wittmer claimed the 100 butterfly, as did Elizabeth Fry in the 100 breaststroke in a 1-2-3 finish.

Sarah Nicholls won the 400 individual medley to set up a fast finish for the Fightin’ Irish. Notre Dame claimed the top two spots in the 400 medley relay, with the team of Carly Quast, Coleen Gillilan, Cailey Grunhard and Wittmer, winning in 3:38.09.

West Virginia started with a come-from-behind result in the women’s 200 free relay, nearly upending a team record. Emily Haimes, Harna Minezawa, Jacqueline McCutchan and Jordan Buechler got to the wall first in 1:31.52, in part thanks to Buechler splitting a 22.26 on the end.

Ally Vannetta won the 200 back for the Mountaineers, and Haimes followed up a runner-up finish in the 100 fly by winning the 100 free in 49.97.

“I was really proud of both teams today,” West Virginia coach Vic Riggs said. “We focused on improving from our last meet by putting the emphasis on controlling what we can control. The teams did a great job of achieving that today. We had several lifetime bests, our women’s 200 freestyle relay team just missed a school record and we competed very well against a top-25 program. As good as we were today, we need to maintain our focus tomorrow to complete our goal for the weekend.”

Notre Dame’s dominance on the men’s side also got a big boost from the divers, with Austin Flaute sweeping the one-meter and three-meter events. He topped 400 points in the latter, scoring 408.32.

The Irish swept the men’s events, led by Cason Wilburn. Wilburn won the 100 fly in 47.70 seconds and the 100 free in 44.30. Wilburn also swam legs on the victorious 200 free relay (with Topher Stensby, Brendan Santana and Alec DeLong) and 400 medley relay (Jack Fitzpatrick, Josh Bottelberghe and Charles Korndoffer).

Fitzpatrick and Thatcher Scannell went 1-2 in the 500 free. Notre Dame swept the top three spots in both the 200 back behind Jack Hoagland’s B cut of 1:44.76, and the 100 breast with Bottelberghe winning in 53.78, an NCAA B cut, and Hoagland second. Max Miranda’s NCAA B cut of 3:49.84 led a sweep of the podium in the 400 IM.

West Virginia’s David Dixon was second in the 100 fly. PJ Lenz and Jake Cardinal-Tremblay were second and third, respectively, in both diving events.