Michigan State women’s swimming & diving broke four school records on day two of the Big Ten Championships
Ann Arbor, Mich. – Michigan State women’s swimming & diving saw four program records fall on day two of competition at the Big Ten Women’s Swimming & Diving Championships in Canham Natatorium in Ann Arbor on Thursday, Feb. 18. Sophomore Racheal Bukowski headlined the effort, breaking the record in the 50 free, twice, before swimming the first leg of the record-setting 200 freestyle relay.
“Racheal swam incredibly well and had a pretty big day,” said head coach Matt Gianiodis. “We were a little disappointed that Lizzie (Elizabeth Brown) just missed a scoring swim, but she had a good swim to break a school record. We just missed top eight in the dive with Maddie (Madeline Sewell), and our relay just missed a top eight opportunity.”
Bukowski clocked a 22.89 in the prelims to earn a place in the finals of the 50 free and break Jenny Rusch’s time of 23.03 from 2013. In the finals, she tapped the wall in 22.85 to better her school record from the morning and finish 17th overall.
Senior Elizabeth Brown’s 2:01.96 in the 200 IM broke Heather Kiluk’s eight-year old record of 2:02.44 set in 2008. The record-setting pace earned the New Zealand native 25th overall. Brown’s previous fastest time in the distance was a 2:02.56.
The night session opened with a third Spartan record being broken, fifth of the week, as Bukowski teamed up with freshman Courtney Aycock, junior Sarah Love and senior Emily Parsons for a 1:31.75 in the 200 free relay. The effort beat out the 1:31.91 posted in 2013. Parsons clocked the quickest of the four splits, anchoring the relay with a 22.53. Bukowski opened the race with a 22.93.
Joining Bukowski in the evening session was junior Madeline Sewell in the one-meter dive. Sewell finished the one-meter competition with a tally of 294.55, good for 12th overall. She posted a score of 284.90 to sit 15th after the preliminary dives.
Julia Oppedisano led a trio of Spartan freshmen in the one meter with a 22nd-place finish, tallying a 260.55. Morgan Wellenzohn and Heidi Surdyk ended the prelims with scores of 235.35 and 229.85, respectively.
“We will get better tomorrow with several events that we are solid in and on the boards,” said Gianiodis. “Our leaders have led, and with a couple of days left we will see what we can do. Our goal is to keep breaking records and be the best team that we have ever had.”
The Spartans currently sit in 11th overall as a team with 129 points.
Day three begins with prelims in the morning, starting with the 400 IM. The three-meter dive prelims are at 1 p.m. The night session kicks off at 6:30 p.m., featuring the finals of the 400 medley relay, 400 IM, 100 fly, 200 free, 100 breaststroke, 100 back and three-meter dive.