2017 Big Ten Championships: Day 2 Finals Live Recap


The 2017 Big Ten Women’s Championships are already shaping up to be a fast meet, after last night’s two events each saw a new conference record. First, Minnesota popped off a a close win in the medley relay over Indiana, despite Lilly King‘s fastest 50 breaststroke medley split in historybreaking Wisconsin’s six-year-old conference record. Then, the Michigan team cut three seconds from their own Big Ten 800 free relay record to win the event by five seconds.

Tonight, we will see King take on the conference champions from the past two seasons in the 200 IM, Siobhan Haughey of Michigan, who set the conference record and took the event last season, and the 2015 champion Clara SmiddyWe’ll also see an incredibly packed 500 free final; the top eight were separated by less than three seconds this morning. Michigan’s G Ryan is the top seed, but they will have to hold off Wisconsin’s Cierra RungeMichigan’s Rose Biand Ohio State’s Lindsey Claryalong with the rest of the field, all within in striking distance. Li Zhesi of Ohio State will be chasing her own Big Ten conference record in the 50 free, after taking the meet record and just missing the conference mark this morning. Then, the session will wrap with 1- meter diving finals and the 400 medley relay, which Indiana comes in seeded first with 3:32.10.


  • B1G Record: 4:34.28, G Ryan, Michigan, 2016
  • B1G Meet: 4:35.19, Haley Lips, Indiana, 2016                
  • Pool: 4:34.13, Allison Schmitt, Georgia, 2010
  • A Qualifying: 4:36.30
  • B Provisional: 4:47.79
  1. G Ryan, Michigan: 4:34.40
  2. Cierra Runge, Wisconsin: 4:37.38
  3. Kaersten Meitz, Purdue: 4:37.45

G Ryan of Michigan just missed their conference record time by .12 to win the 500 free tonight, swimming 4:34.40. They were able to take down Haley Lips’s meet record from last season, however, by over half a second. They won by a big margin, going 2 for 2 in conference championships after last night’s 800 free relay win and outswimming Wisconsin’s Cierra Runge by nearly three seconds. Runge finished in 4:37.38, just outdoing Purdue’s Kaersten Meitz‘s 4:37.45.

Lindsey Clary finished fourth in 3:27.65 fro Ohio State, followed by Becca Postoll of Michigan in 4:38.16. Danielle Valley of Wisconsin was sixth with 4:38.21, followed by Rose Biwho rounded out Michigan’s three-swimmer A final with 4:39.17. (That time was a bit slow for Bi, who has been 3:34.63 this season.) Valerie Slowing of Northwestern finished eighth with 4:43.76.


  • B1G Record: 1:54.97, Siobhan Haughey, Michigan, 2016
  • B1G Meet: 1:54.97Siobhan Haughey, Michigan, 2016     
  • Pool: 1:53.56, Julia Smit, Stanford, 2010
  • A Qualifying: 1:55.35
  • B Provisional: 2:01.59
  1. Lilly King, Indiana: 1:55.90
  2. Clara Smiddy, Michigan: 1:56.15
  3. Meg Bailey, Ohio State: 1:57.75

In a field packed with talent, including the 2016 Big Ten champion Siobhan Haughey and 2015 Big Ten champion Clara Smiddyboth out of Michigan, Indiana’s Lilly King rose to the top of the 200 IM. She finished the race in 1:55.90, splitting 25.30, 30.08, 32.04, and 28.48. Close behind King (and in front of her until the breaststroke leg), was Smiddy, who finished the race second in 1:56.15. Ohio State was able to grab some big third-place points from Meg Bailey, who took third with 1:57.75.

Iowa’s Emma Sougstad took fourth in 1:57.98, followed by Northwestern’s Melissa Postoll with 1:58.23 and Wisconsin’s Jessica Unicomb in 1:58.31. Christina Jensen rounded out the field with 1:59.12 for seventh.

Defending champion Haughey was disqualified because she “did not finish on [her] back” in the backstroke leg. If it weren’t for the disqualification, she would have won by a large margin and broken the conference record by nearly a second. Her splits (24.54/28.97/32.77/27.84) add up to 1:54.12.


  • B1G Record: 21.48, Li Zhesi, Ohio State, 2016****
  • B1G Meet: 21.75, Li Zhesi, Ohio State, 2017
  • Pool: 21.75, Li Zhesi, Ohio State, 2017
  • A Qualifying: 21.80
  • B Provisional: 22.99
  1. Li Zhesi, Ohio State: 21.48
  2. Chase Kinney, Wisconsin: 22.14
  3. Mary Warren, Northwestern: 22.29

After setting a Big Ten meet record this morning in prelims, Li Zhesi of Ohio State came back tonight nearly a quarter of a second faster in the 50 free, blasting 21.48 to tie her own Big Ten record 21.48 from last year’s bronze-medal NCAA performance. That time is faster than anything any other woman has swam this NCAA season, just outdoing Tennessee’s Madeline Banic‘s 21.54 from SECs yesterday (Olivia Smoliga was 21.56 yesterday, and Abbey Weitzeil has been 21.64 this season). Li was the only swimmer under the NCAA ‘A’ cut in the field, and she came in over half a second ahead of her competitors.

Second went to Chase Kinney of Wisconsin in 22.14, followed by Northwestern’s Mary Warren in 22.29. Wisconsin’s Emmy Sehman was next in 22.33, followed by Danielle Nack of Minnesota (22.36), Catie Deloof of Michigan with 22.42, Rachel Bukowski of Michigan State with 22.51, and Kaitlin Saloky of Penn State with 22.60.


  • B1G Record: 375.70, Christina Loukas, Indiana, 2008
  • B1G Meet: 370.30, Kelci Bryant, Minnesota, 2011
  • A Qualifying: 265.00
  1. Yu Zhou, Minnesota: 362.65
  2. Olivia Rosandahl, Northwestern: 354.55
  3. Anna Filipcic, Nebraska: 348.95

Minnesota’s Yu Zhou took the big win on the 1-meter tonight, scoring 362.65 to outdo her opponents Olivia Rosandahl of Northwestern (354.55) and Anna Filipcic of Nebraska (348.95). Fourth went to Minnesota’s Sarah Bacon with 344.25, followed by Jessi Parratto of Indiana (318.70), Addi Walkowiak of Rutgers (314.40), Michal Bower of Indiana (310.65), and Mariam Khamis of Minnesota (307.90).


  • B1G Record: 3:30.13, Indiana (Marie Chamberlain, Lilly King, Gia Dalesandro, Kennedy Goss), 2016
  • B1G Meet: 3:30.17, Indiana (Marie Chamberlain, Lilly King, Gia Dalesandro, Kennedy Goss), 2016
  • Pool: 3:29.76, Arizona (Agy, Chandler, Lopus, Schluntz), 2010
  • A Qualifying: 3:30.40
  • B Provisional: 3:34.96
  1. Indiana (Alexandra Rockett, Lilly King, Gia Dalesandro, Holly Spears): 3:28.89
  2. Minnesota (Tevyn Waddell, Kierra Smith, Danielle Nack, Zoe Avestruz): 3:30.70
  3. Michigan (Clara Smiddy, Emily Kopas, Vanessa Krause, Siobhan Haughey): 3:31.60

The Indiana medley relay of Alexandra Rockett, Lilly King, Gia Dalesandro, and Holly Spears smashed the Big Ten record set at last year’s NCAAs by clocking 3:28.89 to last season’s 3:30.13. They also took down the Purdue pool record of 3:29.76 set by Arizona back in 2010. Unsurprisingly, the win was spearheaded by King, whose 56.53 split outdid the rest of the breaststroke field by nearly two seconds. Dalesandro also posted the fastest split of the field in her stroke, butterflying her way to 51.12.

The Minnesota team (which took the 200 medley record yesterday) swapped last night’s Lindsey Horesji for Kierra Smith on the breaststroke leg. The resulting team of Tevyn Waddell, Smith, Nack, and Zoe Avestruz finished second, with Avestruz hitting the fastest freestyle of the field in 47.30 and Waddell scoring the fastest backstroke with 51.96. Waddell’s lead-off was nearly half a second faster than her seed time going into the individual 100 back (52.40), but still not quite up to the 51.45 needed for an NCAA ‘A’ standard.

The Michigan team of Clara Smiddy, Emily Kopas, Vanessa Krause, and Siobhan Haughey came up third with 3:31.60

Women - Team Rankings - Through Event 7                      
  1. Indiana University                393   2. Wisconsin, University of, Madi  378.5
  3. Michigan, University of           363   4. University of Minnesota           361
  5. Ohio State University             307   6. Northwestern University           230
  7. Purdue University                 223   8. Pennsylvania State University     174
  9. Iowa, University of               172  10. Rutgers University              171.5
 11. University of Nebraska-Lincoln    155  12. University of Illinois            117
 13. Michigan State University         115

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Coach Chackett

Ready for the Siobhan Haughey Video of a non on the back, back finish….


There goes Haugheys chance of being swimmer of the meet!!


I wonder if Lilly King does the finger wag to drug cheat, Li Zhesi.


I doubt she would. They swim different events. In addition, Li doesn’t deny her cheating.

Acc fan

What is she accused of?


Not just accused, but got caught and served 2-yr suspension. I don’t think she is allowed to compete for China, but apparently doing just fine for OSU. IMHO, zero tolerance is the best deterrence against cheaters. https://swimswam.com/former-wr-holder-li-zhesi-banned-for-two-years-for-positive-epo-test/

Acc fan

Oh wow. Did not know those two were the same swimmer. Thanks for the link.
I agree… zero tolerance is the best policy.

About Hannah Hecht

Hannah Hecht

Hannah Hecht grew up in Kansas and spent most of her childhood trying to convince coaches to let her swim backstroke in freestyle sets. She took her passion to Morningside College in Sioux City, Iowa and swam at NAIA Nationals all four years. After graduating in 2015, she moved to …

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