Oct. 12, 2012
The University of Minnesota women's swimming and diving team hosted its first home meet of the season Friday, posting a victory over Iowa State, 144-140, at the University Aquatic Center. The Gophers broke 10 meet records on the night.
"It was a great night, everyone did a great job," head women's coach Terry Nieszner said. "We had a couple athletes swimming a little bit off events, but they came through. These are athletes that are going to fill some holes in our lineup and do a great job."
Minnesota's 200 medley relay team made up of Tess Behrens, Haley Spencer, Erin Caflisch and Tori Simenec led the meet off strong, winning with a time of 1:44.33.
The Gophers' freshmen played an important role on the night, winning three different events. Lauren Votava won the 200 free with a time of 1:49.85, while fellow freshman Kierra Smith earned first place honors in both the 100 breast (1:02.77) and the 200 IM (2:04.28).
"Kierra did great in the breaststrokes and in the IM, and it was a nice win for Lauren Votava in that 200 freestyle," Nieszner stated. "The freshmen are coming through, it's nice."
Not only did the freshmen standout, but Minnesota's sophomores produced six titles against the Cyclones. Jessica Plant earned two victories on the night, claiming first-place honors in the 100 back (56.73) and 200 back (2:01.71), while Simenec also produced two victories for the Gophers in both the 100 fly (55.64) and 200 fly (2:02.03).
"I think overall we raced really, really well," Nieszner said. "We had Jess Plant in the backstroke even though she normally does freestyle for us and she did a great job. I think overall everybody just did a really great job."
Sophomore Heidi Busack touched the wall at 52.71 to earn first-place honors in the 100 free, while fellow sophomore Blake Zeiger won the 500 free (5:00.25).
Senior Lauren Weis finished in 10:11.86 to claim the title in the 1,000 free. Emma Jackson also recorded a first-place mark for the Gophers in the 200 breast with a time of 2:22.88.
On the diving side, Maggie Keefer clinched titles on both the 1-meter (289.72) and 3-meter (302.25).
The meet concluded as the Gophers won the 400 free relay (3:28.30), made up of Marina Spadoni, Behrens, Zeiger and Plant.
The Gophers travel to Kansas next to face the Jayhawks on Saturday, October 20.
"This week we'll get back to work in some really hardcore conditioning," Nieszner said. "We go to Kansas next weekend, but we'll get back to hard training and get ready. Our main focus will be that following week when we bring in Wisconsin and then Iowa for the Big Ten dual meets. Just sharpening up details and working hard."
Smith Shines at 17th FINA World Championships
Gopher alumni Kierra Smith records three top five finishes at the 17th FINA World Championships.
Gophers Compete at Speedo Sectionals
Gopher swimming brings home a handful of first place finishes at Speedo Sectionals.
Gophers Add Alicia Hicken-Franklin to Staff
Former Gopher swimmer Alicia Hicken-Franklin joins coaching staff as Associate Head Coach for men's and women's swimming and diving.