U dance team repeats as national champion

Minnesota’s dance team won the national title Sunday at Disney’s Wide World of Sports complex in Orlando, Fla. It is the first time in the last decade that a Division 1A dance team has won back-to-back national championships.

The dance team has three seniors: Autumn Prois, Sara Schmid and captain Lindsay Johnson. The team is coached by Amber Struzyk.

Minnesota’s spirit squads had three other teams competing at the UCA/UDA cheer and dance national championships. Goldy Gopher received sixth place, second in the Big Ten to Sparty from Michigan State, who took first place. For the first time in school history, Minnesota had a team invited to compete in the partner stunt competition – Jon Kruse and Jenny Piotrowitz. The duo took home fifth place in front of a packed house at Pleasure Island. The Gopher cheerleaders received 12th place while receiving a score of 15/15 for their crowd tape, a vital part of the competition.

Men’s swimming

Minnesota’s men’s swimming team competed in the Tom Malchow Grand Prix at the University aquatic center last weekend. The Gophers were the only collegiate swimming team that competed in the event. The aquatic center welcomed a variety of club teams as well as Olympians to campus.

Terry Silkaitis finished tied for fifth place in the 100-meter freestyle. Silkaitis tied with 2000 U.S. Olympian Klete Keller in a time of 52.53. Neil Osten won the B Final in 53.31 and Sean McCaffrey placed 10th in 53.40. Brian Gettelfinger finished 13th (54.51), and Andrew VanMeter placed 14th (54.56) followed by Kiel Ochalek, who placed 15th (54.91).

Diego Urreta added a ninth-place finish in the 200-meter backstroke clocking a time of 2:09.19. Adam Mitchell added a time of 2:11.01 in the same event for 14th place. Scott Young chipped in a time of 2:17.28 for 16th, respectively. Minnesota alumnus Todd Smolinski finished 11th overall.

Mike Natali placed eighth overall in the 200 butterfly with a time of 2:17.75. Travis Beckerle added a sixth-place showing in the 1500 free. David Moulder clocked a time of 16:23.04 in the same event for eighth place overall. Justin Mortimer, who is delaying his final year with the Gophers to train for the 2004 Summer Olympics, placed third overall in the event with a time of 15:28.30.