Men’s swimming and diving attempts to exact revenge in Gainesville

Bob Wothe

Minnesota’s men’s swimming and diving team heads to Florida to take on the Gators at 7 p.m. tonight in an early-season matchup of two of the nation’s top teams.

Last year, the Gators narrowly defeated the Gophers by a 123-120 margin Oct. 30 at the University Aquatic Center. Now, with the Gophers ranked seventh and the Gators ranked fourth, coach Dennis Dale has a different result in mind.

“We’d like to return the favor,” Dale said. “We think we can out-swim them, it’s just a question of whether our divers can do the job.”

While the Gophers have already competed in intrasquad and alumni meets, today marks the first time they will face another school.

Women head to Ames

Minnesota’s women’s swimming and diving team will hit the road as well, traveling to compete against Iowa State today at 7 p.m.

But the team will be battling more than the Cyclones. The Gophers have health problems to worry about, which co-coach Kelly Kremer said was his biggest concern this weekend.

But Kremer said he’s happy to pick up some early-season racing experience and hopefully get the season started well.

“It’s a great opportunity for us to race under adverse conditions,” Kremer said. “I’d really like to see some of the upperclassmen – particularly seniors – step up and send a message to set the tone for the whole year.”

Rowing in Iowa City

On Sunday, Minnesota’s rowing team will head to Iowa City, Iowa, to race in the Head of the Iowa Regatta.

The Gophers, who won every event they entered at the race last year, are looking for a repeat performance.

“We’re really hoping that we dominate,” coach Wendy Davis said. “Last year, we were shocked to win all of the events. But this year, we’re expecting it.”

The competition is the third of four in the Gophers’ fall season, and Davis said she wants the team to finish it strong.

“I always tell them, ‘If you can win by 10 seconds, don’t win by seven,’ ” Davis said. “We just want to go in there and stick it to them.”