Redbird Swimmers Fall to Illinois; Tazzioli Qualifies for NCAA Diving Regional in March
Senior diving captain Brittany Tazzioli
Senior diving captain Brittany Tazzioli

Nov. 11, 2011

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - The Illinois State swimming and diving team lost to Illinois Friday night in Champaign, with a final score of 190-110. The competition gave the Redbirds many individual 1st place finishes, season best and personal best times, as well an NCAA zone meet qualifying score for diver Brittany Tazzioli.

Freshman swimmer Cecilia Holmes started the meet with a 1st place in the 1000-yard freestyle, boasting a personal best time of 10:25.24. Holmes shattered her previous best time, 10:35.89, by over ten seconds.

"Cecilia swam a smart race," head swimming coach Steve Paska said. "This has really been a fantastic start to her career with the Illinois State swimming program."

Holmes held a 2nd place start at the beginning and majority of the race. She then pulled through to first at the 100-yard mark, where she remained until her victory.

The 1000-yard freestyle also posted highlights from other swimmers. Freshman Valerie Jones finished 3rd in the race, with a season best time of 10:33.95. Junior Danielle Schumacher finished 4th, also clocking a season best time (10:45.83). Senior Michele Stoeppelman had a season best time of 10:45.83, and freshman Keely Hunt swam a personal best time in the event with a 10:55.15.

A 1st place win for Samantha Schuckles in the 100-yard backstroke (58:89) was also a season best swim for the freshman.



"Sammy continues to work hard," Paska said. "She is getting familiar with the college meet format, and she is adjusting very well."

Junior Jeanette Nolte won 1st place in the 100-yard butterfly (57:65), also finishing 2nd in both the 200-yard fly (2:08.96) and the 200-yard IM (2:13.04). Nolte swam to season best times in all three of her events. Junior Tori Alland had a 1st place finish in the 500-yard freestyle (5:06.65), and sophomore April Livingston won the 200-yard breaststroke (2:24.53). Freshman Katherine Nelson had a first place finish in the 50-yard freestyle (24:43), which was also a season best swim.

Senior diver Brittany Tazzioli gave an unforgettable performance on the 1-meter board, qualifying her for the NCAA diving regionals this March, with a score of 271.27. Tazzioli's qualifying score earned her a spot to compete against the top divers in the nation, finishing off '11-'12 season in Bloominton, Ind.

"This is a very exciting accomplishment for Brittany at this point in the season," head diving coach Phil Hoffman said. "I look forward to continue training with her, and I think the NCAA's will provide a fantastic end to her ISU diving career."

The Redbirds next competition takes them to Acron, Ohio to swim in the Zippy Invitation December 2-4.

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