After two days of Big Ten Championship competition, IU is off to a good start.
A series of personal bests have been recorded by the Hoosiers, who are set to bring home six medals after three days of events.
“We are going into this just as prepared as we’ve ever been,” IU Coach Ray Looze said. “Having a tough schedule all year is all just part of what we do to prepare for this.”
So far, it has paid off.
On Wednesday night, the women’s 200 medley relay team of sophomore Marie Chamberlain, freshman Lilly King, junior Gia Dalesandro and sophomore Grace Vertigans won gold with a school record of 1:35.73. The time was also a Big Ten meet and Canham Natatorium record.
The Hoosiers touched second for the silver medal in the 800 freestyle relay with a time of 7:00.83, led by senior Haley Lips and sophomore teammates Kennedy Goss, Vertigans and Delaney Barnard.
For Thursday night’s finals, IU came in sixth place in the 200 freestyle relay with a time of 1:30.20.
Lips dominated the 500 freestyle finals with a gold medal finish time of 4:35.19. Lips recorded a new Big Ten Conference and meet record in addition to setting a pool record in the event.
IU finished in second and third place in the 200 individual medley, with freshman Miranda Tucker leading the way for IU with a time of 1:55.94 for a silver medal. King was awarded bronze for her time of 1:57.21, followed by Dalesandro in fifth.
In diving, senior Lacey Houser came from behind and managed a personal-best 328.80 score on the 1-meter springboard for another bronze medal for the Hoosiers.
Competition resumes Friday morning with preliminaries set to begin at 11 a.m., followed by finals at 6:30 p.m. in the 400 individual medley, 100 butterfly, 200 freestyle, 100 breaststroke, 100 backstroke and 3-meter diving.
This weekend on the men’s side, 13 swimmers will be competing in the First Chance Invitational at Purdue in West Lafayette, Indiana. Participation in this meet will decide the final two swimmers who will complete the IU roster for Big Ten Championships.
The men’s Big Ten Championships will also take place in West Lafayette, Indiana, with the four days of competition beginning Feb. 24.
“This is a big opportunity for some of our men to earn their spot to compete in Big Tens,” Looze said. “We want to field the best team possible, so we’re hoping to have a tough decision and that three or four or five guys will come out and contribute. There’s no doubt this is a special group for both our men and women this year.”
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