Natalie Fiorilli | The Duquesne Duke
The Duquesne women’s swimming team competed against Marshall on Saturday in its final home meet of the season. After winning five consecutive meets since Oct. 24, the team lost to Marshall 167-94.
Marshall dominated the meet, as the Dukes secured only two wins in 14 total races. Junior Samantha Ray won the 100-yard freestyle in 53.19 seconds, while senior Line Lovberg completed the 200-yard butterfly in 2:09.01 to finish in first place. Freshman Lexi Santer finished just three tenths of a second behind Lovberg to claim second place. In total, the Dukes finished with eight second-place finishes in the meet.
The Duquesne swimmers recognized their seniors in their last meet at Towers Pool. Five seniors competed: Lovberg, Sadie Clifford, Bret Luke, Grace Manfroni and Jamie Ruh.
Lovberg and Luke traveled far from home to compete for the Duquesne women’s swimming organization. Luke is from Dauphin, Manitoba while Lovberg is from Oslo, Norway.
Lovberg described her experience of swimming in the U.S as a love-hate relationship.
“It’s very different, but it works. I came here and I improved. It’s bittersweet because I have been here for four years now,” Lovberg said. “The team and everyone is so close, but I am also kind of ready to be done too. I’m going to miss it so much.”
The swim team will close out the regular season on Jan. 31 at the Western Pennsylvania Invite, hosted by the University of Pittsburgh. Coach David Sheets is most concerned with the swimmers completing the season healthily in anticipation of the upcoming Atlantic 10 Championships on Feb. 18 in Geneva, Ohio.
“Our main focus right now is to get prepped for the conference championships in three weeks,” he said. “We will go to Pitt and try to do the best that we can and focus on trying to tighten up some things that we know we need to do better on, and get ready for the conference championships.”
“The end expectation is always to swim fast. That’s something we do very well,” Sheets said. “As far as place goes, if we swim fast then the place will take care of itself. We can’t chase the scoreboard the whole four days we are there. Where we finish at the end is where we finish. We want to go and do the best that we can.”
Lovberg said that although they may not have swam their best against Marshall, she is confident they will do much better at the championships just over three weeks from now.
“I just hope that I will swim the fastest that I ever have. I think that we are the best team that Duquesne has ever had, so I’m really excited to see what the girls can do,” she said.