Huskers Claim Ninth at Big Ten Championships
Minneapolis, Minn. - Nicole Schwery finished 11th in the platform dive, Samantha Hardewig earned 12th in the 200 breast and the Nebraska swimming and diving team wrapped up competition at the 2014 Big Ten Championships on Saturday evening at the University of Minnesota Aquatic Center.
The Huskers finished in ninth place, overall, scoring 145 points. The squad also earned ninth in 2013 after finishing 11th in 2012.
Saturday evening’s session began with Husker senior Bailey Pons swimming a career-best 16:27.53 in the 1,650-yard freestyle, earning 17th and an NCAA B cut. Fellow seniors Morgan Flannigan (16:52.75) and Ashleigh Grammar (17:37.31) each swam season bests, finishing 27th and 37th.
1,650-yard Freestyle Results
17th - Bailey Pons, 16:27.53 (Career Best, NCAA B Cut)
27th - Morgan Flannigan, 16:52.75 (Season Best)
37th - Ashleigh Grammar, 17:37.31 (Season Best)
38th - Michaela Cunningham, 17:47.45 (Career Best)
In the 200-yard backstroke, Rebekah Land took 19th with a time of 1:59.90. The junior swam a career-best 1:58.69 in the prelims, moving to fourth on NU's all-time list.
Samantha Hardewig placed 12th in the 200-yard breaststoke, finishing in 2:14.77 and holding the place she earned in the preliminary round. Hardewig swam a career-best time of 2:14.69 in the prelims.
Fellow sophomore Katie Ditter topped the career-best 2:18.35 she swam in the 200 breast prelims, taking 19th with a new career best of 2:16.96 in the C final.
The 100-yard freestyle saw Taryn Collura finish 16th with a finals time of 50.52. Collura swam a season-best 49.54 in the prelims and was the only Husker to score in three events at the meet.
In the final swimming event of the day, the 200-yard butterfly, Natalie Morris (2:01.02) and Julia Roller (2:03.67) finished 18th and 22nd for the Huskers. Both Morris and Roller set career bests in the prelims.
In the diving well, Nicole Schwery and Kaitlan Walker finished 11th and 16th in the platform diving competition. Schwery posted a career-best score of 267.10 in the finals after scoring 251.55 in the prelims. Walker's best score of the day was her 224.15 in the prelims.
Platform Diving Results
11th - Nicole Schwery, 267.10 (Career Best)
16th - Kaitlan Walker, 187.55
In the final event of the Big Ten Championships, the Huskers took eighth place in the 400-yard freestyle relay. The team of Taryn Collura, Shannon Guy, Bria Deveaux and Alexandra Bilunas posted a season-best time of 3:20.24.
Overall, Nebraska produced 10 top-16 finishes and 26 top-24 finishes over the seven sessions of the meet. Taryn Collura placed in the top 16 three times, but Anna Filipcic led the team in points with 16.
Afterward, Head Coach Pablo Morales commented on both the individual performances in Saturday evening's session and his team's overall finish at the meet.
"Today was probably our best day," Morales said. "We had some fabulous swims and lifetime-best times. Rebekah Land blew it out of the water, dropping multiple seconds off her lifetime best. Sam Hardewig also had a great performance in the 200 breast, dropping over six seconds off her career best. From a performance standpoint, we can't complain with the lifetime bests, but we just fell short of the top 16 all meet. Overall, we finished ninth, and even though we want to keep climbing up, I think that was a very good result for us."
Women - Final Team Results
1. Minnesota - 760
2. Indiana - 649
3. Penn State - 484
4. Ohio State - 374
5. Michigan - 361
6. Wisconsin - 338
7. Purdue - 334
8. Iowa - 199
9. Nebraska - 145
10. Northwestern - 110
11. Michigan State - 87
12. Illinois - 79