MINNEAPOLIS – Minnesota men’s and women’s swimming and diving enjoyed their return to the Jean K. Freeman Aquatic Center with a pair of dual wins over Denver Saturday afternoon. Both squads collected 13 first place finishes in the 16 event meet.
“In almost every event we saw something that really looked like we are on the right path and I am very happy with the meet,” said head coach Kelly Kremer. “For us the relays get you going and it sure helps the rest of the meet. That gets the team feeling like we are out to perform that day.”
MEN | No. 22 Minnesota 195, No. 23 Denver 105
The Minnesota men’s team (4-3) saw three individuals take home multiple first place finishes in the freestyle, breaststroke and butterfly strokes.
Leading in the freestyle Bowen Becker connected in the 50-yard free (19.62) and 100 free (43.81). Dominating the breaststroke, senior captain Conner McHugh took the 100-yard breast in 55.39, before defeating the field in the 200 breast in just over three-and-a-half seconds (1:59.46). Tumoas Pokkinen displayed his speed during the butterfly events. In the 100-yard fly Pokkinen touched in first at 48.19 following a tight finish in the 200 fly (1:49.38) beating teammate Matt Thomas to the wall one-tenth of a second quicker.
In the diving well, Alan LeBlang tallied a pair of first place finishes. LeBlang scored a 373.20 on the 1-meter and 399.00 on the 3-meter. Minnesota diving took the 2-3-4-5 spots behind LeBlang in both events.
Contributing a pair of second place finishes, Eitan Yudashkin registered strong swims in the 100 breast (56.60) and 200 breast (2:04.01). Matt Thomas connected on second place finishes in the 100 fly (48.93) and 200 fly (1:49.48).
Minnesota’s A relay took a pair of victories in the 400 free relay (2:59.10) and 200 medley relay (1:29.39).
WOMEN | No. 16 Minnesota 196, Denver 104
Strong contributions in the freestyle, breaststroke and butterfly events lifted Minnesota (7-1) to a non-conference victory over Denver.
Senior Danielle Nack led the pack with first place finishes in the 100 fly (1:58.21) and 200 fly (52.92). Teammate and sister Chantal Nack returned the favor taking the top spot in the 100 free (50.73) and 200 free (1:48.30), while Lindsey Kozelsky put the cherry on top finishing first in the 100 breast (1:00.82) and 200 breast (2:12.15)
Abbey Erwin gave the Gophers the strong start they needed picking up the first individual win of the day in the 1650 free in a time of 16:53.77. A few races later Tevyn Waddell extended her winning streak in the 100 back to six races, touching in at 54.98.
Junior Kaia Grobe added a pair of second place finishes with a time of 23.84 in the 50 free and 56.40 in the 100 fly. Rachel Munson stayed strong in the 100 breast (1:03.81) and 200 breast (2:18.24) adding key second place finishes that led the Gophers to taking the top three spots in the breaststroke events.
Sophomore transfer Kristen Hayden had herself quite the day on the diving boards. Setting a new personal record in the 3-meter Hayden notched 333.30 points for the top spot following a score of 293.33 in the 1-meter. Mariam Khamis, Beth Etterman and Morgan Justus all combined for a 2-3-4 finishes in both diving events.
Minnesota’s A relay team once again displayed a strong performance adding a pair of first place finishes in the 400 free relay (3:24.07) and 200 medley relay (1:40.70).
Minnesota hosts their regular season finale in Big Ten style on Jan. 26-27. The Gophers welcome Northwestern and Purdue to Dinkytown in a meet scheduled to begin at 6 p.m. on the 26th and noon on the 27th.
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