In between long breaks, Gophers men head to Georgia

Lindsay Guentzel

Coming off a three-week break, the menâÄôs swimming and diving team heads to the Georgia Invitational for their fourth team meet of the season. Head coach Dennis Dale said the Gophers will face âÄúsome really powerhouse teams,âÄù including Auburn, Georgia, Kansas, Penn State and Virginia during the three-day meet. The Gophers, who attended the Ohio State Invitational the past five years, havenâÄôt been to the Georgia Invitational since 2004, when they notched a first-place finish. Sitting at 2-1, the Gophers are in a good position for the tough match-ups. Their only loss came against North Carolina in November, and they followed it up a week later with a dominant showing at USA SwimmingâÄôs Minnesota Grand Prix. Both of the menâÄôs 400-yard freestyle relay and 400-yard medley relay teams took first place at the Grand Prix, while senior Ivan Gutesa finished third in the 200-yard breaststroke event. âÄúWe will probably rest a few days for [the Georgian Invitational] and really try and swim our best of the fall,âÄù Dale said. âÄúAnd then weâÄôll go back to work.âÄù Following the Georgia Invitational, the men have another extended break and donâÄôt compete until they host a Jan. 15 dual meet with Missouri. After that they have just two more dual meets before the Big Ten championships on Feb. 23. The Gophers took third in Big Tens last year but this season have the added advantage of hosting the four-day meet at the UniversityâÄôs Aquatic Center. âÄúWeâÄôre very happy about it,âÄù Dale said. âÄúSwimming in your home pool, you get to stay in your comfort zone and having our own fans being able to come, itâÄôs an advantage.âÄù