2016 WOMEN’S BIG TEN CHAMPIONSHIPS
- When: Wednesday, February 17th to Saturday, February 20th | Prelims 11am | Finals 6:30pm
- Where: Canham Natatorium, Ann Arbor, MI (Eastern Time Zone)
- Defending Champion: Minnesota Gophers (4x) (results)
- Meet Preview
- Live Results
- Streaming: Big Ten Network ($)
- Championship Central: here
The teams will begin to make major moves in the point standings after tonight’s session, with Michigan and Indiana leading the pack by returning 13 and 12 swimmers, respectively, to tonight’s finals. Indiana holds 2 of the night’s top 3 individual event seeds in the form of Haley Lips in the 500 and Miranda Tucker in the 200 IM, but the Wolverines certainly hold depth with 6 swimmers sprinkled across the night’s A finals.
Ohio State claimed 3 spots of tonight’s 50 freestyle A-Final, with Zhesi Li (Liz Li) holding the lane 4 pole position with her stunning swim of 21.73 this morning. The Big Ten record stands at 21.58 from 2014 and could potentially be at risk should Li have enough left in the tank to drop a little over a tenth tonight.
Keep refreshing this page for event-by-event updates in real-time.
200 FREESTYLE RELAY – FINALS
- Ohio State – 1:28.29
- Wisconsin – 1:29.10
- Michigan – 1:29.12
And the Buckeyes struck first tonight, taking down their own school record in the relay, led-off by a freakishly-fast 21.63 split by Zhesi (Liz) Li. That knocks a tenth off of her individual 21.73 clocked earlier today in prelims and kicked off the squad’s momentum to carry them to an NCAA A cut time of 1:28.29. Teammate Annelise Jongekrijg also split a nasty 22.06 for the Buckeyes, followed by Rachael Dzierzak‘s 22.36 and Macie McNichols’ 22.24 to clear their incoming seed time of 1:30.20 by almost 2 full seconds. The podium-topping effort broke the pool record set by Wisconsin in 2009 and also raked in a big 64 points for the Ohio State squad right off the bat.
The Badger women came into the meet holding the nation’s 15th-fastest 200 free relay overall and swiftest of the B1G conference with a time of 1:30.12, but couldn’t get to the top of the podium tonight, primarily due to Li’s crushing opening 50. But, Chase Kinney (22.12) threw down a super swift first leg of her own for the 2nd-quickest lead-off of the entire field, followed by teammates Marissa Berg in 22.14, Jessica Unicomb in 22.35 and Anne Tamblyn in 22.49. Their collective mark of 1:29.10 also clears the NCAA A cut threshold of 1:29.16 to automatically qualify.
Michigan’s combination of Siobhan Haughey (22.41), Ali DeLoof (22.03), Clara Smiddy (22.41) and Madeline Frost (22.27) was able to capture 3rd place in a mark of 1:29.12, knocking over 2 seconds off of their entry time and also clear the A cut. Just .02 of a second separated Michigan from Wisconsin tonight, which translates to just a 2 point advantage in the relay scoring.
Relay Scoring: 64-56-54-52-50-48-46-44-40-34-32-30-28
500 FREESTYLE – FINALS
- Haley Lips, Indiana, 4:35.19
- Yirong (Rose) Bi, Michigan, 4:35.69
- Lindsey Clary, Ohio State, 4:39.09
2015’s runner-up finisher, Haley Lips from Indiana is your new Big Ten Champion in the women’s 500 yard freestyle in a shiny new Big Ten Record. Lips threw down a career-best time of 4:35.19 to clinch tonight’s victory and also overtake the previous conference record held by National Teamer Lindsay Vrooman. Vrooman’s record of 4:35.41 was also the meet record clocked in 2013, so Lips just slaughtered the record books tonight with her teams’ fastest time in history. Her mark is also an NCAA automatic qualifying time and scores 32 points for the Hoosiers.
New Wolverine Yirong Bi (Rose Bi) moved up a slot from prelims and finished 2nd to Lips tonight, giving the Indiana swimmer a run for her money. The two traded slim leads, with Bi actually owning the faster opening 50 and final 50, but wound up exactly half a second behind Lips with a mark of 4:35.69, also an automatic qualifying time. Rose Bi is also now the fastest Wolverine woman in the event in history.
Although a 2013 Chinese National Champion and international medalist, Bi’s quickest 500 yard freestyle time headed into this meet was a 4:45.40 from when she first joined Michigan in January, so she hacked 10 seconds off that between her prelims and finals swims. Plus, Bi is just a freshman. Both Lips and Bi would have finished within the top 5 at last year’s NCAA Championships.
3rd place tonight went to Lindsey Clary from Ohio State, who maintained her 4:39 outing from this morning, but dropped from 4:39.46 to 4:39.09. Her new clocking tonight now gives her the fastest time ever in Buckeye program history.
Last year’s Big Ten Champion, Hoosier Kennedy Goss, settled for 9th place overall in a time of 4:41.16. She finished prelims in the 13th spot with a mark of 4:43.25, so the sophomore was able to shave a couple of seconds off to put 20 points on the board for Indiana as the B-Final winner tonight.
200 IM – FINALS
- Siobhan Haughey, Michigan, 1:54.97
- Miranda Tucker, Indiana, 1:55.94
- Lilly King, Indiana, 1:57.21
And just like that, another Big Ten Conference Record bites the dust, courtesy of freshman sensation Siobhan Haughey from the University of Michigan. Yes, she’s a freshman and just rocked a new conference, meet and pool record with her sub-1:55 mark of 1:54.97, an NCAA automatic qualifying time.
Having clocked a morning swim of 1:57.94, Haughey sat as the 2nd seed behind freshman Miranda Tucker from Indiana. But, Haughey meant business tonight, whipping off opening splits of 25.25 and 28.90 followed by 33.74 for breaststroke and closing in an absolutely wicked final 50 of 27.08. Haughey was the only sub-1:55 swimmer of the final and her time tonight would have garnered a 4th place finish at the 2015 NCAA Championships. This year, only Madisyn Cox (1:54.29) and Ella Eastin (1:54.43) have been faster, barring any conference results happening concurrent with this meet.
Tucker also threw down an exquisite swim, registering a time of 1:55.94, just about half a second shy of the NCAA A cut. Tucker dropped about a second from her 1:56.91 outing and actually clocked the swiftest breaststroke split of the entire group a 32.44. That’s saying something, as breaststroking wizard Lilly King from Indiana was in the mix, touching in 1:57.21 for 3rd, including a 32.78 breaststroke split.
So 1-2-3 freshman finish in the A-Final of the women’s 200 IM, with 2 coming from Hoosierville. Last year’s Big Ten Champion was also a freshman at the time, Clara Smiddy from Michigan. She settled for 4th tonight, touching in 1:57.26, off her 1:56.74 winning mark from 2015.
50 FREESTYLE – FINALS
- Zhesi (Liz) Li, Ohio State, 21.80
- Chase Kinney, Wisconsin, 22.19
- Ali DeLoof, Michigan, 22.37
In her 3rd sub-22 swim of these championships, Ohio State’s Liz Li smoked a new pool record in the splash n’ dash, finishing in first with a time of 21.80. Although just off her morning swim of 21.73, Li did already hammer out a flat-start split of 21.63 on tonight’s Buckeye winning 200 freestyle relay, so another 21-point is a successful swim.
The second and third spots remained the same from prelims to finals. Wisconsin racked up 28 points in the form of Chase Kinney‘s 2nd place finishing mark of 22.19, her career-best by .03 of a second, while the Wolverines’ Ali DeLoof hacked about a tenth off her morning swim to stop the clock at 22.37 for 3rd tonight. DeLoof’s fastest ever is the 22.27 she posted at last year’s NCAA Championships, which rendered her a 25th place finish.
Not taking into consideration the outcome of the 1-meter diving final about to take place, Michigan overtook Indiana in the overall team scoring during tonight’s final, but the difference is still awfully close at this point. Whereas Indiana led the pack with 120 points followed by Michigan and then Penn State as they headed into day 2’s finals, now the leaderboard looks like this:
- Michigan 374.5
- Indiana 359.5
- Ohio State 321
- Penn State 271.5
- Wisconsin 265.5
- Minnesota 221.5
- Purdue 180
- Northwestern 169
- Nebraska 162
- Iowa 135.5
- Illinois 125
- Michigan State 111
- Rutgers 77