Illini Conclude Two-Day Minnesota Challenge
Feb. 4, 2012
MINNEAPOLIS - The Fighting Illini swimmers and divers collected seven top-five finishes and 17 personal bests as they concluded action at the Minnesota Challenge Saturday night.
"I thought as a team, they raced hard and tough," Illini head coach Sue Novitsky said. "We had some younger swimmers taking steps in the right direction. It was also good to have a couple of our seniors finish strong. It's good to see them stepping up, competing and representing the Illini. Seeing these girls step up and swim hard while enjoying the process was great."
Sophomores Anne Goering and Emily Wilkinson led the Illini, posting fourth- and eighth-place finishes. Goering placed fourth in the 100 free (53.28) and eighth in the 50 free (24.62), while Wilkinson earned fourth in the 200 fly (2:10.89) and eighth with a personal-best 2:10.20 in the 200 IM.
Freshman Callan McDermott claimed a fourth-place finish as well, swimming a 2:07.30 in the 200 back. The newcomer also placed 10th in the 100 back with a 1:00.24 and swam a 2:11.14 in the 200 IM, posting personal bests in each of those events.
An additional pair of Illini freshmen concluded the meet with two top-10 finishes apiece, including Katie Roeing with a seventh-place and personal-best finish in the 100 back (59.58) and another personal-best and eighth-place swim in the 200 back (2:08.39). Meanwhile, classmate Sabrinne Gibson earned sixth in the 100 back with a personal-best 59.49 and ninth in the 200 back (2:08.92). Gibson also claimed personal bests in the 50 free (24.81) and 100 free (54.67).
Several other Illini posted personal bests on the night, including freshman Andrea DeAngelis in the 100 breast (1:09.96) and 200 breast (2:30.79), Goering in the 100 back (1:02.14), Roeing in the 200 IM (2:12.11), and Gibson in the 50 free (24.81) and 100 free (54.67).
In the 400 free relay, the team of seniors Caitlin Conroy and Michelle Mehnert, Georing and Gibson finished second with a time of 3:37.40, while the 200 medley and 400 medley teams each claimed fifth.
On the boards, juniors Tessa Adams and Keri Eberhardt led the Illini with fourth-place finishes in the one-meter dive (personal-best 278.40) and the three-meter dive (265.10), respectively. Senior Britni Fisher posted fifth-place finishes in the one- (277.80) and three-meter (248.15) events.
The divers collected a total of nine top-10 finishes on the weekend, including two apiece from Adams, Eberhardt, Frisher and junior Darragh McDermott. The Illini also earned personal-best dives from Adams on her one-meter dive and freshmen Erika Murphy (one-meter, 253.00) and Emily Fung (one-meter, 190.85; three-meter, 192.50).
The Orange and Blue will return to action at the Big Ten Championships, Feb. 15-18 in Iowa City, Iowa.