Starkville, Miss. / Starkville Academy
The St. Catherine women's swimming and diving team and senior Steffanie Jurusik (Starkville, Miss/Starkville Academy) challenged themselves against some extremely tough competition over the weekend at the Grinnell (Iowa) invite, and had to be pleased with the results. Jurusik finished in the top five in all four of her individual events - including a first-place finish and new school record in the 200-yard butterfly - while going toe-to-toe with great competitors from all three Divisions of the NCAA. For her record-setting performance, Jurusik was named the MIAC Women's Swimming and Diving Athlete-of-the-Week.
Jurusik's school record of 2:14.35 in the 200-yard butterfly, along with her first-place finish, were her top highlight in a weekend filled with great performances from the Wildcat senior. She broke the record previously set in 1982 by Sue Heidelberg, who was an NCAA champion. She also finished third in the 100-yard butterfly (100.80), fourth in the 200-yard backstroke (2:13.34) and fifth in the 200-yard individual medley (2:13.04). The only swimmers to beat her in her individual races were Gustavus' Alissa Tinklenberg and one swimmer from the host school, and the rest were from Division I Nebraska-Omaha. Jurusik also swam on four SCU relays which finished sixth, eighth, 10th and 12th. This season, she ranks in the top five in the MIAC in the 100 and 200 fly.
Jurusik and her fellow seniors will be honored Friday as St. Catherine hosts Macalester and Augsburg for its annual "Senior Meet," which starts at 6 p.m. The Wildcats busy weekend continues Saturday, and they will host the St. Kate's Invite Saturday, starting at 1 p.m. The team will also compete in the UST Diving Invite at St. Thomas on Feb. 1 before taking a couple weeks off to prepare for the 2013 MIAC Swimming and Diving Championships, which will be held Feb. 14-16 at the University of Minnesota Aquatic Center in Minneapolis.