Louis Agudelo/Staff Writer
For the first time this season, the University will host a single opponent.
The Fighting Illini from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign will be making the 1,300 mile trip to the Biscayne Bay Aquatic Center, and while the Fighting Illini are looking to improve their two-meet winning streak to three, FIU aims to remain undefeated in the pool.
This is the furthest south that the swimming and diving team from Illinois will travel for a meet this season, which could prove to be a challenge for the team.
Besides the exhaustion of travel, there is an added level of stress from swimming in an outdoor facility. The Illini practice and compete in ARC Pool, an indoor facility in Champaign, Illinois. considering the outdoor conditions.
FIU doesn’t do any indoor swimming unless they absolutely have to, so the fact that this weekend’s temperatures don’t look to drop below 75 degrees Fahrenheit, doesn’t pose any challenge for the Panthers.
The workload for this meet is comparably less from others, as FIU started the 2015-2016 season with two dual meets. With only one opponent to study and prepare for, it’ll give the Panthers more time to prepare for specific strong points that the Illini bring to the table, like their relay team.
At the last meet for Illinois, their 400 yard freestyle posted a first place finish, and only fell four seconds short of FIU’s last finish in that event.
Friday, Nov. 6 at 5 p.m., and Saturday, Nov. 7 at 11 a.m. the two squads face off.
While Head Coach Randy Horner will be the first to tell you that he and his team are only looking to improve this weekend and prepare for Conference USA Championships, staying undefeated on the season seems to be a top priority.