2024 Women’s Big Ten Championships: Day 3 Finals Live Recap

2024 WOMEN’S BIG TEN SWIMMING & DIVING CHAMPIONSHIPS

Day 3 Finals Heat Sheet | Day 3 Ups/Mids/Downs

We’re all set for a busy third finals session at the 2024 Women’s Big Ten Championships on Friday night featuring the 100 butterfly, 400 IM, 200 freestyle, 100 breaststroke, 100 backstroke, 3-meter diving, and 200 free relay.

The 100 fly title is anyone’s for the taking as Michigan junior Natalie Kan (51.97) led prelims this morning with three other swimmers — including defending champion Kit Kat Zenick of Ohio State (52.00) — within .07 seconds of her.

Indiana senior Anna Freed fired off a huge lifetime best to lead 400 IM prelims this morning in 4:08.37. She will likely need to keep dropping time in order to pull off an upset against the favorite, Minnesota senior Megan Van Berkom (season-best 4:04.36).

Indiana junior Anna Peplowski is aiming for her first individual title of the meet after placing 2nd in the 500 free on Thursday night behind Michigan sophomore Katie Crom. Peplowski is the top seed in tonight’s 200 free (1:43.90) just ahead of Wisconsin junior Abby Carlson.

We should also see some fun battles in the 100 breast and 100 back. In the 100 breast, Ohio State fifth-year Josie Panitz (58.36 in prelims) is attempting to dethrone teammate Hannah Bach (58.54). In the 100 back, Indiana junior Kacey McKenna (51.53) eked past Wisconsin senior Phoebe Bacon (51.54) this morning by just a hundredth of a second — the same razor-thin margin separating their season-best times this year.

The Buckeyes are expected to dominate the 200 free relay at the end of the session after sweeping the top three spots in the individual 50 free final on Thursday night.

Team Scores After Day 2

  1. Ohio State – 444
  2. Michigan – 433
  3. Indiana – 426
  4. Wisconsin – 381.5
  5. Minnesota – 286.5
  6. Purdue – 199
  7. Nebraska – 170
  8. Penn State – 153
  9. Iowa – 152
  10. Northwestern – 148
  11. Rutgers – 123
  12. Illinois – 86

100 BUTTERFLY – FINAL

  • NCAA record: 48.25, Kate Douglass (Virginia) – 2024
  • Big Ten record: 48.89, Maggie MacNeil (Michigan) – 2021
  • Meet record: 49.42, Maggie MacNeil (Michigan) – 2020
  • Pool record: 50.09, Maggie MacNeil (Michigan) – 2018
  • NCAA ‘A’ cut: 50.69
  • Time to qualify for 2023 NCAAs: 52.20

Top 8:

  1. Kit Kat Zenick (Ohio State) – 51.47
  2. Brady Kendall (Michigan) – 51.79
  3. Natalie Kan (Michigan) – 51.88
  4. Anna Boemer (Michigan) – 51.99
  5. Tristan Harrison (Ohio State) – 52.03
  6. Morgan Kraus (Ohio State) – 52.25
  7. Claire Reinke (Minnesota) – 53.22
  8. Catherine Russo (Ohio State) – 53.40

Ohio State senior Kit Kat Zenick defended her 100 fly title with a winning time of 51.47, .01 seconds quicker than she was last season. Her lifetime best stands at 50.84 from NCAAs last year, where she placed 8th.

Michigan sophomore Brady Kendall dipped under 52 seconds for the first time en route to a runner-up finish in 51.79. Her best time before today was a 52.27 before she posted a personal-best 52.04 in prelims this morning.

Two more Wolverines, junior Natalie Kan (51.88) and freshman Anna Boemer (51.99), were the only other swimmers under 52 seconds in the final. Boemer clocked a new lifetime best on her way to 4th place, lowering her previous-best 52.37 from November. Before arriving in Ann Arbor last fall, her best time was 52.77 from last March.

Ohio State senior Tristan Harrison touched the wall right after Boemer in 52.03. Harrison will return to the pool later in the session for the 100 back, where she’s seeded 5th. Two more Buckeyes — fifth-year Morgan Kraus (52.25) and senior Catherine Russo (53.40) rounded out the A-final along with Minnesota freshman Claire Reinke (53.22).

400 IM – FINAL

  • NCAA record: 3:54.60, Ella Eastin (Stanford) – 2018
  • Big Ten record: 4:01.35, Calypso Sheridan (Northwestern) – 2019
  • Meet record: 4:01.41, Allysa Vavra – 2012
  • Pool record: 4:00.90, Julia Smit – 2010
  • NCAA ‘A’ cut: 4:03.62
  • Time to qualify for 2023 NCAAs: 4:11.36

Top 8:

  1. Megan Van Berkom (Minnesota) – 4:06.71
  2. Cal Dunn (Wisconsin) – 4:08.90
  3. Krista Marlin (Ohio State) – 4:09.46
  4. Kathryn Ackerman (Michigan) – 4:09.54
  5. Mia Rankin (Ohio State) – 4:10.48
  6. Anna Freed (Indiana) – 4:10.87
  7. Kyra Sommerstad (Ohio State) – 4:11.24
  8. Jessica Eden (Ohio State) – 4:15.21

Minnesota senior Megan Van Berkom reclaimed her Big Ten title in the 400 IM after placing 2nd last year. She reached the wall with a winning time of 4:06.71, more than two seconds ahead of Wisconsin senior Cal Dunn. Van Berkom was still a couple seconds slower than her season-best 4:04.36 from November and personal-best 4:03.45 from her 2022 title win.

Dunn had never broken the 4:10 barrier before, and she skipped 4:09 altogether en route to her runner-up finish in 4:08.90. Her best time before today was 4:11.15 from November before clocking a personal-best 4:10.30 in prelims this morning.

Ohio State sophomore Krista Marlin lowered her lifetime best by a few tenths during her 3rd-place showing in 4:09.46. Her previous best was 4:09.82 from November.

Michigan senior Kathryn Ackerman placed 5th in 4:09.54, still a couple seconds off her personal-best 4:06.95 from 2021.

After leading prelims this morning with a personal-best 4:08.37, Indiana senior Anna Freed added a couple seconds en route to a 6th place (4:10.87).

Three more Buckeyes joined Marlin in the A-final as junior Mia Rankin (4:10.48), senior Kyra Sommerstad (4:11.24), and sophomore Jessica Eden (4:15.21) rounded out the top eight swimmers.

200 FREESTYLE – FINAL

  • NCAA record: 1:39.10, Missy Franklin – 2015
  • Big Ten record: 1:40.69, Siobhan Haughey – 2018
  • Meet record: 1:41.57, Siobhan Haughey – 2019
  • Pool record: 1:42.49, Siobhan Haughey – 2017
  • NCAA ‘A’ cut: 1:42.84
  • Time to qualify for 2023 NCAAs: 1:45.31

Top 8:

  1. Anna Peplowski (Indiana) – 1:42.62
  2. Abby Carlson (Wisconsin) – 1:43.49
  3. Stephanie Balduccini (Michigan) – 1:43.75
  4. Katie Crom (Michigan) – 1:43.93
  5. Ayla Spitz (Northwestern) – 1:44.54
  6. Amy Fulmer (Ohio State) – 1:44.77
  7. Kristina Paegle (Indiana) – 1:46.74
  8. Ella Ristic (Indiana) – 1:46.88

Indiana junior Anna Peplowski cruised to victory in the 200 free with a winning time of 1:42.62, more than a second ahead of Wisconsin junior Abby Carlson (1:43.49). Peplowski was still more than half a second shy of her personal-best 1:42.04 from the 800 free relay leadoff on Wednesday night.

Carlson lowered her lifetime best by a few tenths from 1:43.88, which also came during Wednesday’s 800 free relay.

Michigan freshman Stephanie Balduccini took 3rd in 1:43.75, not far off her personal-best 1:43.30 from November. The Brazilian standout is fresh off a trip to the World Championships last week in Doha, Qatar.

Michigan sophomore Katie Crom, the surprise 500 free champion on Thursday night, couldn’t quite muster the same magic in the 200, but she still dipped under 1:44 for the first time in her career. Her personal-best 1:43.93 earned her 4th place and shaved .18 seconds off her previous best (1:44.11) from last February.

Northwestern fifth-year Ayla Spitz, a transfer from Cal, placed 5th in 1:44.54. She was within a second of her personal-best 1:43.80 from Wednesday’s 800 free relay.

100 BREASTSTROKE – FINAL

  • NCAA record: 55.73, Lilly King (Indiana) – 2019
  • Big Ten record: 55.73, Lilly King (Indiana) – 2019
  • Meet record: 55.88, Lilly King – 2019
  • Pool record: 56.30, Lilly King – 2017
  • NCAA ‘A’ cut: 58.02
  • Time to qualify for 2023 NCAAs: 59.73

Top 8:

  1. Hannah Bach (Ohio State) – 57.54
  2. Josie Panitz (Ohio State) – 58.49
  3. Brearna Crawford (Indiana) – 59.73
  4. Hazal Ozkan (Wisconsin) – 1:00.11
  5. Maia Hall (Nebraska) – 1:00.16
  6. Tina Celik (Rutgers) – 1:00.41
  7. Reese Dehen (Ohio State) – 1:00.52
  8. Claire Donan (Michigan) – 1:00.63

Ohio State fifth-year Hannah Bach blazed her second-fastest 100 breast ever — her quickest since 2022 — to capture the Big Ten title in 57.54.

She reached the wall almost a second ahead of Buckeye teammate Josie Panitz (58.49), who was slightly slower than her 58.36 from prelims.

Indiana junior Brearna Crawford was the only other swimmer under a minute in the final at 59.73, also slightly slower than her 59.64 from prelims.

Nebraska junior Maia Hall dropped more than half a second off her best time from last February with a 5th-place finish in 1:00.16, right behind Wisconsin sophomore Hazal Ozkan (1:00.11). Ozkan has been as fast as 59.53 in November.

Rutgers junior Tina Celik clocked her second lifetime best of the day on her way to 6th place in 1:00.41. Her best time entering today was a 1:01.19 from last February before registering a 1:00.95 in prelims this morning.

100 BACKSTROKE – FINAL

  • NCAA record: 48.26, Gretchen Walsh (Virginia) – 2023
  • Big Ten record: 49.18, Beata Nelson – 2019
  • Meet record: 49.70, Beata Nelson – 2020
  • Pool record: 50.84, Gemma Spofforth – 2010
  • NCAA ‘A’ cut: 50.88
  • Time to qualify for 2023 NCAAs: 52.36

Top 8:

  1. Kacey McKenna (Indiana) – 50.49 *Pool record
  2. Phoebe Bacon (Wisconsin) – 51.14
  3. Nyah Funderburke (Ohio State) – 51.68
  4. Casey Chung (Michigan) – 52.08
  5. Tristan Harrison (Ohio State) – 52.69
  6. Paula Rodriguez Rivero (Minnesota) – 52.74
  7. Mya Dewitt (Indiana) – 52.79
  8. Morgan Kraus (Ohio State) – 52.87

The first pool record of the night fell in the 100 back courtesy of Indiana junior Kacey McKenna (50.49), who dropped .84 seconds off her lifetime best from earlier this month to prevent Wisconsin senior Phoebe Bacon (51.14) from reclaiming the Big Ten title. McKenna erased the previous pool record of 50.84 that British world champion and former world record holder Gemma Spofforth established way back in 2010.

Bacon was faster than her season-best 51.32, and within a second of her personal-best 50.39 from 2021. Ohio State junior Nyah Funderburke, the defending conference champion in this event, added a couple hundredths from prelims and placed 3rd in 51.68.

Michigan senior Casey Chung narrowly missed her best time (52.07 from Thursday’s 400 medley relay leadoff) with a 4th-place finish in 52.08.

After placing 5th in the 100 fly (52.03), Ohio State senior Tristan Harrison also placed 5th in the 100 back with a 52.69. Despite being on the back half of a double, she wasn’t far off her personal-best 52.05 from last January.

Minnesota senior Paula Rodriguez Rivero blasted a new personal best on her way to 6th place. The Spanish native tallied a time of 52.74, shaving .04 seconds off her previous-best 52.78 from last February.

3-METER DIVING – FINAL

  • Meet record: 436.7, Sarah Bacon – 2022
  • Pool record: 415.5, Kelci Bryant
  • NCAA ‘A’ qualifying score: 280

Top 8:

  1. Skyler Liu (Indiana) – 379.95
  2. Anne Fowler (Indiana) – 347.05
  3. Vivi Del Angel (Minnesota) – 344.6
  4. Sophia McAfee (Purdue) – 336.85
  5. Elna Widerstrom (Minnesota) – 336.35
  6. Daryn Wright (Purdue) – 324.7
  7. Janie Boyle (Ohio State) – 312.45
  8. Lily Witte (Indiana) – 300.6

Indiana junior Skyler Liu dethroned defending champion Anne Fowler (347.05) to claim the 3-meter diving crown with a score of 379.95. Liu, a native of China, placed 3rd last year with 365.1 points.

Fowler, a senior at Indiana, won last year with 385.55 points.

Minnesota sophomore Vivi Del Angel placed 3rd with 344.6 points, one of two Gophers in the A-final along with freshman Elna Widerstrom (336.35, 5th place).

Purdue also placed a pair of divers in the A-final with junior Sophia McAfee placing 4th (336.85) and sophomore Daryn Wright finishing 6th (324.7).

Ohio State fifth-year Janie Boyle placed 7th with 312.45 points. The Buckeyes might have had more points in this event if not for an ankle injury to Ciara McGing, who withdrew from this morning’s prelims after a promising first dive.

200 FREESTYLE RELAY – FINAL

  • NCAA record: 1:23.63, Virginia – 2024
  • Big Ten record: 1:25.80, Ohio State – 2023
  • Meet record: 1:26.70, Ohio State – 2023
  • Pool record: 1:27.03, Louisville – 2022
  • NCAA ‘A’ cut: 1:28.43
  • Time to qualify for 2023 NCAAs: 1:29.20

Top 8:

  1. Indiana – 1:26.66 *Big Ten Championships meet, pool record
  2. Michigan – 1:26.75
  3. Wisconsin – 1:28.16
  4. Penn State – 1:30.14
  5. Northwestern – 1:30.47
  6. Minnesota – 1:30.55
  7. Illinois – 1:31.05
  8. Purdue – 1:31.61

For the second night in a row at Big Tens, the winning relay team was disqualified due to an early take-off.

Ohio State crushed its own meet record from last year (1:26.70) with a winning time of 1:26.10, but the Buckeyes were disqualified due to an early take-off by senior Catherine Russo (21.63 split) on the third leg. Ohio State junior Teresa Ivan led off with a 21.81, senior Kit Kat Zenick followed with a 21.53, and fifth-year Amy Fulmer anchored with a blistering 21.13 split.

With the defending champion and heavy favorite Buckeyes out of the picture, Indiana wound up as the winner — and new meet record holder — with a time of 1:26.66. Junior Anna Peplowski (21.97), fifth-year Ashley Turak (21.52), sophomore Chiok Sze Yeo (22.14), and sophomore Kristina Paegle (21.03) carried the Hoosiers to victory. Paegle posted the fastest swinging split in the field at 21.03.

Michigan’s quartet of freshman Stephanie Balduccini (22.39), sophomore Brady Kendall (21.42), senior Claire Newman (21.68), and junior Lindsay Flynn (21.26) combined for a runner-up finish in 1:26.75, also under Louisville’s previous pool record (1:27.03) from 2022. The Wolverines reached the wall exactly half a second shy of their program record (1:26.25) from 2019.

Wisconsin’s squad of freshman Hailey Tierney (22.06), senior Phoebe Bacon (21.81), sophomore Abby Wanezek (22.10), and junior Abby Carlson (22.19) was the only other team sub-1:30 in the final at 1:28.16 for 3rd place.

Penn State placed 4th thanks to junior Molly Carson (22.83), senior Catherine Stanford (22.28), senior Ellie Brandbergh (22.76), and senior Margaret Markvardt (22.27). Northwestern (1:30.47) and Minnesota (1:30.55) were within half a second of the Nittany Lions in 5th and 6th place, respectively.

Team Scores After Day 3

  1. Ohio State – 907
  2. Indiana – 884
  3. Michigan – 835
  4. Wisconsin – 624.5
  5. Minnesota – 574.5
  6. Purdue – 363
  7. Penn State – 305
  8. Northwestern – 298.5
  9. Nebraska – 296
  10. Rutgers – 237.5
  11. Iowa – 217
  12. Illinois – 152

As expected, Ohio State leads with 907 points after a big third finals session where the team had 16 swimmers in A-finals, by far the most in the conference. However, thanks to the Buckeyes’ 200 free relay DQ, Indiana (884) and Michigan (835) are within striking distance heading into the final day of action on Saturday.

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Pippa
1 month ago

How do completely skip over the Wisconsin Badgers taking third in the relay? You discuss the entire DQ’d relay then the first place winner, second place winner then jump to Penn state taking fourth and the 5th and 6th place teams.

#MFan
1 month ago

Michigan woman showed up! Great swims!

Badgers
1 month ago

Why isn’t the Big Ten reporting relay take off times?

IU Swammer
1 month ago

And things just got interesting.

Swimmer
Reply to  IU Swammer
1 month ago

Buckeyes giving it right back to the Hoosiers 😳
Very interesting meet shaping up!

About Riley Overend

Riley is an associate editor interested in the stories taking place outside of the pool just as much as the drama between the lane lines. A 2019 graduate of Boston College, he arrived at SwimSwam in April of 2022 after three years as a sports reporter and sports editor at newspapers …

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