Feb. 17, 2010
Video Preview: Meyer, Thompson, Wanland | Video Preview: Hansen
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. -- With a successful dual-meet season in its rearview mirror, the No. 17-ranked Wisconsin women’s swimming and diving team heads to West Lafayette, Ind., for the 2010 Big Ten Conference Swimming and Diving Championships.
The four-day meet begins with the 200-yard medley and 800-yard freestyle relays Wednesday at 5:30 p.m.
Competition in the remaining events will be staged Thursday, Friday and Saturday, with a preliminaries session getting underway at 10 a.m. each day and finals following at 5:30 p.m.
Big Ten Network will broadcast the championships on tape-delay basis at 7 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 26.
The Badgers head into the championship season after a successful run of five-consecutive wins to close the dual-meet season. The Badgers swept conference rivals Illinois, No. 10 Minnesota and No. 22 Purdue at the Big Ten Quad Duals, Jan. 29-30.
That performance came on the heels of consecutive dual wins over Hawaii and Green Bay, as well as a third-place finish at the annually-competitive Texas Invitational.
Previewing the Championships
The Badgers seek to improve on their fifth-place finish at last year’s Big Ten meet and will look to defend last year’s titles in the 50-yard freestyle (Beckie Thompson), 200-yard breaststroke (Ashley Wanland) and 200-yard medley relay.
Seven of the conference’s 11 teams are ranked among the nation’s top 25 according to the latest CSCAA Division I poll, with No. 10 Minnesota leading the way. Indiana checks in at No. 12, followed by No. 16 Michigan, No. 17 Wisconsin, 22nd-ranked Purdue, No. 23 Ohio State and No. 24 Northwestern.
Junior Maggie Meyer, who set a single-season conference record by earning five Big Ten Swimmer of the Week honors, enters the championships as the conference’s top-ranked swimmer in both the 50-yard freestyle (22.58) and 100-yard backstroke (52.41). Meyer’s time in the 100 back is also the nation’s top mark this season.
With a season-best mark of 22.86, sophomore Beckie Thompson is also near the top of the charts in the 50 free, an event in which she holds the all-time Big Ten record at 22.09.
Sophomore Ashley Wanland, the reigning Big Ten Freshman of the Year, stands No. 2 in the conference in the 100-yard breaststroke and stacks up No. 3 in the 200-yard breaststroke. She trails Minnesota’s Jillian Tyler in both events.
The Badgers rank No. 2 in the 200-yard freestyle relay, with their time of 1:31.44 from the Big Ten Quad Duals ranking just behind the season-leading mark of 1:30.38 by Michigan.
Wisconsin also stands second in the 400-yard freestyle relay, owning a season-best mark of 3:21.07 to stands No. 2 to Michigan’s time of 3:19.22.
In the 200-yard medley relay, an event in which UW holds the all-time Big Ten record, Wisconsin stands No. 3 this season at 1:41.24. Michigan’s 1:39.87 leads the conference.
The Badgers also stand fourth in the 400-yard medley relay at 3:40.95, with Minnesota’s season-best time of 3:38.64 leading the league.