Tulane Swimming & Diving comes from behind to beat FIU, falls vs. Rice

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NEW ORLEANS – Down big with three events left, the Tulane women’s swimming and diving team pulled off an incredible comeback to highlight day two of the Dual-a-Pool-Ooza at the Reily Natatorium.

Competing against FIU in the morning session, the Green Wave rallied back from a big deficit to earn a 103-101 tie against the Panthers. Tulane trailed 87-62 through eight events but made up that 25-point gap in the final three events of the contest.

In the afternoon session, Rice defeated Tulane 133-66.

In the first meet of the day against FIU, Olivia Johnson picked up a win for the Green Wave in the 500 free, taking the race with a time of 5:00.11. Three events later, Shelly Zelnick won the 200 back with a time of 2:01.73.

With Tulane trailing by 25 points with three races left, the Green Wave started to roll. Gabby Vieira claimed the win in the 200 free, touching the pad at 1:53.23. Morgan Tacik was right behind her in second place with a time of 1:53.58, inching Tulane closer to FIU’s score.

Immediately after that, Johnson picked up another victory. This time, Johnson – already the school record holder in the event – claimed the 400 IM race with a time of 4:23.17. Tulane also got third-place points from Kate McDonald in that event. Johnson’s time was the new 13th-best overall time in program history.

And in the final race of the morning, the 200 free relay team of Courtney Barker, Shelly Zelnick, Paris Zhang and Jeni Griffin won in a time of 1:35.34. Combining that with the third-place finish from Kaitlin Simpson, Lena Hayakawa, Inger-Ane Schefte and Tacik, the Green Wave scored just enough points to keep the Panthers from winning. The 1:35.34 time is now 15th-best in Tulane history.

Earlier in the diving, Anise Muir’s total of 219 points put her 10th all-time in team history in the 1-meter springboard. McDonald also posted a new top-10 time in program history in the 100 breast, racing to a time of 1:04.92 that improves on her already sixth-place time in Tulane history.

During the afternoon meet against Rice, Zhang won the 100 back with a time of 56.13. Anise Muir won the 3-meter springboard with a score of 247.4, her best score of the weekend and the new 10th-best 3-meter score in program history. Katie Nicol scored a 210.95 for second place, now the 13th-best 3-meter score in school history.

Tulane posted six other second-place finishes against the Owls.

Tulane now has the next two weekends off before returning to action on November 16-18 at the Phill Hansel Invitational hosted by conference rival Houston.

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