Women’s swimming starts season with a pair of wins

by Lindsay Guentzel

The womenâÄôs swimming and diving team cruised through two meets this weekend, notching big wins on the road in their season opener against Michigan and Michigan State. The Gophers knocked off Michigan on Friday, beating the Wolverines 169-131 with senior Jillian Tyler adding three individual wins in the teamâÄôs victory. Minnesota continued its dominance on Saturday, notching another win with a dominating 186-108 victory at Michigan State. âÄúIt was a great start to the season for us,âÄù head coach Kelly Kremer said. âÄúBecause we handled it so well, it gives us a lot of confidence moving forward.âÄù The win over Michigan was a particularly good sign, since the Wolverines finished right behind Minnesota last year in the Big Ten. Kremer was glad to start the season against a strong opponent and, as it were, jump right in. âÄúOpening against Michigan in their pool, they had a lot of people there that were supporting them,âÄù he said. âÄúThatâÄôs the type of atmosphere that we are going to get when we go to places like the Big Ten championships in Indiana.âÄù The confidence carried over to Saturday as the Gophers won 14 of the 16 events against Michigan State. Twelve Gophers won individual titles against the Spartans, including sophomore Haley Spencer setting a pool record in the 200 breaststroke with a time of 2 minutes, 18.11 seconds. Besides jumping out to a 2-0 record, the weekend was highlighted by a strong performance by the freshmen class, including a big win for freshman Maggie Keefer. Keefer won the 1-meter diving competition with a score of 319.35, securing her first collegiate title for the Gophers. The Gophers have a week to prepare for hosting Iowa State, their first home meet of the season. One weekend in, Kremer is optimistic about the season ahead. âÄúThis is probably one of the most balanced and mature teams weâÄôve had, particularly to start a year,âÄù he said. âÄúThey are all on the same page, they are all in the same chapter together. They are really committed to staying together and supporting each other.âÄù