MEN'S SWIMMING AND DIVING: Ball State to take on Southern Illinois

Cardinals coming off victory at IUPUI Relays

Five hundred ninety-seven miles, 10 hours on the road and two swim meets in two days.

That's what the weekend holds for the Ball State men's swimming and diving team as it travels to Carbondale, IL to take on Southern Illinois University on Saturday and then head to Indianapolis for the Butler Invitational Sunday.

Coach Bob Thomas admits that all the travel will make for a tough weekend, but he's hopeful that his team can handle it.

"I think they're experienced enough to take it one meet at a time," Thomas said. "It's a great opportunity to swim against a team like Southern Illinois and compete in the pool where the championship meet will be held."

Thomas said that he encourages his swimmers to take mental pictures and focus on visualization techniques so that they'll be more comfortable when they return in March for the Mid-American Conference championships.

The Cardinals will rely heavily on two juniors, Gavin McNeely and Chris Krupa, and sophomore Michael Weber.

McNeely is eighth in the MAC in the 100-yard breaststroke and 11th in the 200 breaststroke.

Krupa ranks 11th in the 100 butterfly, eighth in the 200 fly, and 12th in the 200 IM.

Weber completes the top trio, ranking 16th in the 100 backstroke, 18th in the 200 backstroke, and 19th in the 200 IM.

As the season builds towards the MAC championships, Thomas said he'll look for times to start improving.

"We had a really good meet on Monday and just had some great performances," Thomas said. "We had a lot of times that were better than they had been in the fall semester."

Sunday's meet includes another matchup with Xavier University, which the Cardinals have beaten three times already this season, along with host Butler, Valparaiso University, and Hillsdale College.



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