The No. 10 University of Minnesota women’s swimming and diving team earned four of five event wins to kick off the first day of the two-day Minnesota Challenge, tonight at the University Aquatic Center. No teams scores were kept through the Challenge.
Minnesota started the night with a win in the 200 free relay. Melissa Nelson, Meghan Weiss, Brianna Chu and Natalie Herrild earned a win when the foursome combined for a winning time of 1:36.23. Minnesota’s B relay of Madeline Takaki, Corina Hopkins-Vacca, Cory Miller and Stephanie Solfelt placed fourth in 1:40.73.
The Gophers then took the top five spots in the 500 freestyle. Hannah Whitehead won the event in a time of 4:49.59, while Marissa Davies was second in 4:54.42. Amy Funk followed in third (4:58.34), while Eleanor Prewitt-Thomas was fourth (5:04.81). Andrea Hanson closed out the top five with a time of 5:07.37.
Although the Gophers didn’t take the top spot on the 200 individual medley, the Gophers took the next four spots. Cory Miller led the Gophers with a second-place time of 2:06.70, while Lauren Greenburg was third (2:07.50) and Avery Michienzi was fourth (2:09.05). Hopkins-Vacca was fifth in 2:09.49.
Nelson won her second event of the night, this time individually in the 50 freestyle. Nelson touched the wall in a winning time of 23.67, while Weiss was fourth overall in 24.44 and Herrild was seventh in 24.64.
The Gophers concluded the evening with a win in the 400 medley relay. Miller, Hopkins-Vacca, Nelson and Weiss combined for a time of 3:49.36 to win the event.
The second session starts tomorrow at noon (senior introduction prior to competition start), while the third and final session kicks off at 6 p.m