Women in first place at Big Ten Championship

Alexandra Pluym

After the second night of the Big Ten Championship, the No. 10 Minnesota women’s swimming and diving team is in first place. The Gophers ended the second day with two event titles, which is a Big Ten Championship meet record. The Gophers now have 204.5 points heading into tomorrow’s competition. Michigan is in second place with 195.5 points. And last year’s champions, Indiana, have 191 points. Sophomore Kelci Bryant, who is in her first Big Ten Championship, finished the night with a Big Ten title and a championship meet record in the 1-meter event. Bryant scored 348.20 and set a Big Ten Championship meet record, previously set by Indiana’s Christina Loukas in 2006. Sophomore Ashley Steenvoorden finished Thursday night with her second career Big Ten title and the first in the 500 free. She finished the night with a win in the 500 free with a time of 4:39.47. Steenvoorden posted a career-best and provisional qualifying time, defeating Michigan’s Emily Brunemann with a final time of 4:41.66, which was two seconds better than Brunemann. An exciting finish for Minnesota came in the 500 free when sophomore Hannah Whitehead finished third overall. Swimming mostly backstroke for the Gophers, she finished with a time of 4:42.76. The Gophers started Thursday night with a third-place finish in the 200 free relay. Juniors Alison Eggers, Kaylee Jamison, Meagan Radecke and Megan Braun combined for a season-best and provisional qualifying time of 1:30.80. The Gophers didn’t place swimmers in the 200 IM Championship final. They had three swimmers compete in the consolation final, junior Jillian Tyler, freshmen Haley Spencer and Paige Bradley. Tyler won the consolation final in a season-best time of 2:00.26. Spencer followed in 11th, finishing with a time of 2:00.55 and Bradley finished in 12th with a time of 2:00.86. Eggers represented the Gophers in the 50 free final when she touched the wall in 22.96, while Jamison finished 13th overall in 23.16 and Radecke ended 15th in 23.26.