For the second time at the Georgia Invite, Yuen Kobayashi earned an automatic qualifying time and will compete in the 2007 NCAA Championships. Kobayashi, who set an automatic qualifying time in the 500 free (4:44.51) Friday, won the 1,650-yard freestyle event in a time of 16:18.83. The Gophers ended the Georgia Invite with a third-place finish with 891 points. Host and No. 8 Georgia won the event with 1073 points, followed by No. 4 California with 996.
Kobyashi dominated the 1650 free, finishing nearly seven seconds faster then the second-place finisher. Christine Jennings also competed in the 1650 free and finished with a time of 16:36.77 and sixth place. Minnesota had three individuals advance to the A Final of the 200 backstroke. Jenny Shaughnessy bettered her prelim time of 2:00.52 and finished third with a time of 1:59.80. Roxane Akradi added a fourth-place finals time of 2:00.05, while Jennifer Hasling posted a time of 2:02.02 and seventh overall. Competing in the B Final was Deidre DeWall, Erin Forster and Castina Wabeke. DeWall added a finals time of 2:02.66, followed by Forster in 2:02.80 and Wabeke in 2:05.80.
Meredith McCarthy led the Gophers in the 100 free when she clocked a season-best time of 50.24 and finished third. Stacy Busack, Valerie Tukey and Erin Holtmeyer all competed in the 100 free B Final. Busack touched the wall in 51.22, while Tukey clocked a time of 51.55 and Holtmeyer followed with a time of 51.71.
Kim Kazika led the Gophers in the 200 breaststroke event with a time of 2:22.66. Katie Budahl added a time of 2:23.13 and Corina Hopkins-Vacca finished in 2:24.24. Erin O’Neil led the Gophers in the 200 fly event when she finished in a time of 2:03.06 and competed in the A Final. Jennifer Chang added a time of 2:04.25 in the B Final.
Minnesota closed the Georgia Invite with a third-place finish in the 400 free relay. The relay of Shaughnessy, Kobayashi, Busack and McCarthy combined for a time of 3:23.18.
In diving action, Minnesota placed two divers in the top three in the platform. Holly Jakits finished second overall with a score of 246.60, while Erica Schiffler added a third-place finish with a score of 235.85. Brianna Hubbard finished sixth (219.65), while Alex Barstad finished seventh (216.95). HIllary Provo and Jacqueline Schroeder closed out the Minnesota diving corps, finishing eight and ninth overall.
The Georgia Invite marks the final competition for the Gophers in the 2006 calendar year. Minnesota will train in Hawaii following Christmas and compete in the Hawaii Rainbow Invitational, Jan. 13. Minnesota will return to conference action in the Quad Duals (Wisconsin, Illinois, Purdue), Jan. 19-20 in Madison, Wis.