AKRON, Ohio - The University of Akron swimming and diving team will welcome 13 women's teams and nine men's teams to compete in the annual Zippy Invitational this weekend at Ocasek Natatorium.
Friday and Saturday's prelim sessions begin at 9:00 a.m. with finals each night at 6:00 p.m. Sunday's morning prelim session will also being at 9:00 a.m. with the meets last session set for Sunday at 4:00 p.m. The diving events will be contested in between swimming sessions on Friday and Saturday.
Admission for individual prelim sessions is $5 for adults and $3 for youth. Admission for individual finals sessions is $7 for adults and $5 for youth. Spectators may purchase an all-session pass for $30 (adults) and $20 (youth).
All six sessions of the meet will be streamed live on MAC-Sports.com. Fans can also follow the action with live results throughout the meet. Links for both the live stream and live results can be found above.
The Zips enter the meet after compiling a 2-3 record in dual meet action through the first half of the season. Most recently, Akron took down fellow Mid-American Conference foe Bowling Green on Nov. 18 by a score of 189-106. Juniors Becca Zimmer and Kelsea Cross each captured two events in the win over the Falcons. Zimmer - who is compiling an excellent season in the distance freestyle events - won both the 1,000-yard and 500-yard freestyle. Cross took care of the backstroke events, winning both the 100-yard and 200-yard.
Coach Nittaya Klim will also look for strong performances from sophomore Catherine Carr this weekend. Carr set the school record in the 400-yard individual medley at last season's MAC Championships and has turned in solid swims in the individual medley and butterfly events this season.
On the boards, Leeanna Hoover and Carla McNamara have both already turned in NCAA Zone qualifying performances this season. Both divers were top ten finishers in the diving events at last season's MAC Championships.
Akron finished fourth in the 12-team meet in 2010, and will have to compete against a host of strong teams from across the Midwest this weekend. The defending MAC Champions Ohio Bobcats will be looking for their fifth straight Zippy Invite crown, with MAC runner-up Toledo as and Buffalo also representing the MAC in the meet. The invite also features several traditionally strong NCAA Division II teams, notably Clarion, who has won eight national titles and were fourth at the NCAA Division II National Championships last season.
Defending Zippy Invite and MAC Champions Buffalo highlight the field in the men's competition. Xavier, Clarion, and Army will look to challenge the Bulls.