ThThe No. 14 University of Minnesota women's swimming and diving team hosts the Minnesota Challenge this weekend, Friday-Saturday, Feb. 5-6, at the University Aquatic Center Dorothy L. Sheppard Pool. The coed meet is split into three sessions, Friday at 6 p.m. and Saturday at noon and 6 p.m.
As many as 15 schools could compete in the Challenge, including Iowa and Iowa State and several local NCAA Division II and III schools.
The Gophers will use this meet as a final tune-up for the 1999 Big Ten Women's Swimming and Diving Championships, which Minnesota hosts on Feb. 18-20.
ADVANCE TICKETS AVAILABLE FOR BIG TEN'S - All-session tickets for the 1999 Big Ten Women's Swimming and Diving Championships, Feb. 18-20, at the University of Minnesota Aquatic Center Dorothy L. Sheppard Pool are available by calling the Gopher Ticket Office at 612- 624-8080 or 1-800-U-GOPHER. The price of an all-session ticket is $30.
GOPHERS COLLECT THREE WINS AT TRIPLE DUALS - The No. 14 University of Minnesota women's swimming and diving team picked up three dual meet victories at the Big Ten triple dual meet in Indianapolis. The Golden Gophers defeated No. 16 Wisconsin, 224-117; Illinois, 227-118; and Purdue, 238-118. Minnesota completed its dual meet season with a record of 7-1-1 and owns a 5-1 mark against Big Ten opposition.
Minnesota won eight events against all three opponents with junior Jenny Hennen (Anoka, Minn./Anoka) leading the way with three first-place finishes. Hennen, who won the 200-yard butterfly and was part of the winning 800-yard freestyle relay on Friday, added the victory in the 100-yard freestyle with a time of 51.59 seconds on Saturday.
Gopher diver T.D. Rowe (Issaquah, Wash./Liberty) was also a double individual event winner for the Gophers. Rowe won both the 1-meter (491.80) springboard on Friday and the 3-meter board (418.30) on Saturday. The senior co-captain has captured the 1-meter and 3- meter diving titles in each of the Gophers' last six dual meets.
Other Gophers winning events against Wisconsin, Illinois and Purdue were Ann Cahoy (Hudson, Wis./ Hudson) in the 200-yard backstroke (2:03.81) and Kate McMillan (Palatine, Ill./Palatine) in the 200-yard breaststroke (2:21.61).
Two Minnesota relays also claimed first-place finished in the three dual meets. The 200 medley relay of Beth Shimanski (Hutchinson, Minn./Hutchinson), McMillan, Terri Jashinsky (Menomonee Falls, Wis./ Menomonee Falls) and Amy Cottrill (Fairport, N.Y./ Fairport) won the event with a time of 1:45.01. Jinny Smedstad (Cedar Rapids, Iowa/John F. Kennedy), Katy Christoferson (Burnsville, Minn./Burnsville), Cottrill and Hennen teamed to win the 800 freestyle relay in a time of 7:28.17.
MINNESOTA RANKED 14TH - Minnesota is ranked No. 14 in the Speedo American College Swimming Coaches Association Top 25, dated Jan. 21. Georgia is No. 1, while Michigan (No. 9), Northwestern (No. 12) and Wisconsin (No. 16) are other Big Ten teams included in the national poll. Illinois and Indiana received votes. The next release date for the national poll is Feb. 18.
HEAD COACH JEAN FREEMAN - Minnesota head coach Jean Freeman enters her 26th season with the Golden Gophers. Freeman has guided the Golden Gopher program to seven top-20 national finishes. She is assisted by Terry Nieszner and diving coach KZ Li.