The Valpo men’s and women’s swimming teams got the 2023-24 campaign off to a strong start Saturday at the Valparaiso Aquatic Center, as both squads picked up dual meet wins over Southern Indiana and three individuals impacted the program’s record books. The Valpo men bested USI, 159-103, while the women edged the Screaming Eagles, 136-126.
How It Happened
- A trio of Valpo men had multiple individual event wins, led by three from sophomore Jackson Oostman (Aurora, Ill./Marmion Academy). Oostman improved upon his collegiate PR to move into sixth in program history in the 100 back with a time of 52.46, while also taking top honors in the 200 back (1:57.12) and the 200 IM (1:57.25).
- Sophomore Anthony Martin (Bartlett, Ill./Bartlett) held down the sprint free events on Saturday, leading Valpo in all three and winning the 100 free (48.26) and the 200 free (1:44.64).
- Junior Brendan Stangeland (West Fargo, N.D./Sheyenne) swept the breaststroke events, touching the wall in 59.95 in the 100 breast and 2:13.90 in the 200 breast — leading a 1-2-3 Valpo finish in the latter.
- Sophomore Garrett Hoppman (Midland, Texas/Midland) paced a Valpo sweep of the top three in the 100 fly with a time of 53.31.
- The Beacons also picked up a relay win to close out action in the 400 free relay, as Martin, freshman Sean Toolis (Frankfort, Ill./Lincoln-Way East), sophomore Jeremy Suarez (Romeoville, Ill./Plainfield East) and Oostman combined to touch the wall in 3:15.46.
- On the women’s side, all six of Valpo’s individual event wins came from freshmen, with a pair of rookies posting two wins apiece in their first collegiate meet.
- Freshman Sophie Schoch (Medina, Ohio/Medina) immediately moved into the program’s record book with her first individual swim, winning the 100 back in 1:00.07 — tenth-fastest in program history. Schoch later led a 1-2-3 Valpo finish in the 200 back with a time of 2:12.72.
- Freshman Faith Bargwell (Grand Rapids, Mich./Rockford) dominated the women’s sprints on Saturday. Her first individual swim was a win in the 50 free with a time of 24.94, as she won by nearly a second and led a 1-2-3 Valpo finish. Bargwell followed by taking top honors in the 100 free with a time of 54.89, outpacing the rest of the field by 2.11 seconds.
- Freshman Kailyn Benoit (Sussex, Wis./Hamilton) joined Schoch with a record book-worthy performance in the first individual swim of her collegiate career, coming home in 2:13.30 in the 200 fly to win and move into eighth in program history in the event.
- Freshman Olivia Tressler (Las Vegas, Nev./Desert Oasis) rounded out the six event wins from newcomers on the women’s side with a time of 2:18.40 to capture the 200 IM.
Valpo will be back in competition in two weekends with a pair of meets, starting on Friday, Oct. 13 with a dual meet at IUPUI. First swim that afternoon is slated for 3 p.m. CT.