The Missouri men and Arkansas women took home the team titles at the Missouri Invite on Saturday evening.
Women – Team Rankings
1. Arkansas, University of, Fayetteville 809
2. Utah, University of 698
3. University of Missouri 697
4. University of California, Davis 446.5
5. Florida International Univ. 436.5
6. West Virginia University 313.5
7. Southern Illinois University 212.5
8. Northern Colorado 114
9. University of Nebraska 66
10. Saint Louis 57
11. Unattached 52
12. Colorado State University 11
Men – Team Rankings
1. University of Missouri 1255
2. Utah, University of 937.5
3. West Virginia University 672
4. Southern Illinois University 408
5. Saint Louis 310.5
6. University of North Dakota 53
7. Unattached 49
On the women’s side, Arkansas and Utah started the day strong in the mile with Utah’s Sami Zuch winning in 16:19.30, and Arkansas’ Nicole Menzel took 2nd in 16:26.09.
Though the Missouri women swam very well in the shorter, sprint events, they got hammered in the scoring in these distance events by the two teams that finished ahead of them. The Tigers didn’t score a single point in the mile, while Arkansas scored 61. Missouri scored a few points in the 500 earlier in the meet, but Arkansas also scored even more, and those two races alone accounted for the difference in this meet.
In the women’s 200 backstroke, Florida International picked up their 3rd event win of the meet, when Johanna Gustafsdottir won the race in 1:55.74. She beat out Arkansas’ Anna Mayfield (1:56.06) and her FIU teammate Sonia Perez Arau (1:57.35) for the win. The Panthers of FIU, with their lethal duo of Gustafsdottir and Arau, opened a few eyes at this meet with some stellar performances.
Back to the sprint events, where the Tigers looked so good at this meet, Missouri’s Dani Barbiea won the 100 free in 49.01. She was the standout swimmer on the women’s side of this invite, and she picked up her 3rd individual first-touch of the meet (though only two of them officially counted as wins – she exhibitioned the 100 back final).
She just barely got this win. She came in .03 seconds ahead of Utah’s Traycie Swartz, who was a 49.04 for 2nd. Arkansas’ Nina Drolc was 3rd in 49.31.
Arkansas’ Nikki Daniels blew away her best time of the season in the women’s 200 breaststroke final with a 2:09.34. After a breakout year in the sprint 100 yard breaststroke race last season, this year as a junior her 200 is making a huge leap forward to match. That swim is her lifetime best by a full second.
Missouri’s Abby Duncan, who is redshirting this season, took 2nd in 2:10.39, and the true Tiger, Katharine Ross, was 3rd in 2:11.44.
Closing out the individual events with the 200 fly came the meet’s first win for UC-Davis. Freshman Hilvy Cheung, part of the more modern era of diminutive butterfliers (she’s listed at only 5’4″) won the race in 1:57.60. That’s a lifetime best by two seconds for the California native.
Utah’s Petra Soininen took 2nd in 1:58.52, and Missouri’s Anna Patterson was really impressive for 3rd in 1:58.93. Patterson really rode a wide spectrum of success at this meet, putting up stellar times from the 50 free to the 200 fly, and everywhere in between.
The Arkansas women closed the meet with a win in the 400 free relay in 3:17.65, putting them two seconds ahead of Missouri’s 3:19.67. Although the Tigers had a great 48.26 second leg from Barbiea, it was the balanced Arkansas relay that took the day. Arkansas had all four swimmers go under 50 seconds, including an impressive 48.82 anchor from Maddie Monroe.
Missouri’s men’s distance group fared quite a bit better than their women’s did to start off their Saturday session, but Utah’s Bence Kiraly still won fairly easily in 15:02.41.
Close behind him was Missouri’s Eegan Groome in 15:11.92, and Martin Wallace took 3rd in 15:32.72.
Missouri freshman Carter Griffin then took the win in the men’s 200 backstroke and very nearly set an NCAA Automatic Qualifying Time. As it was, he had to settle for just a School Record with a 1:41.67, breaking the 2010 mark belonging to Jan Konarzewski in 1:42.60 (Carter had actually broken that record in prelims as well).
His teammate Austin Fish, who was 3rd in this race in 1:43.29, now ranks 3rd on the Tigers’ all-time list as well.
In between the two was West Virginia’s Bryce Bohman, who swam a 1:42.95 (coming way down after a bit of a change-up in prelims, going just 1:46.7).
Utah’s Nick Soedel, who was in a sprint class of his own for the most part at this meet, picked up his 2nd individual win with a 43.39. Not far behind him was Missouri’s Max Grodecki in 43.66, who looked better-and-better as this meet went on. Michael Chadwick, a Missouri freshman, was 3rd in 44.09.
Missouri’s Sam Tierney looked outstanding in the 200 breaststroke, swimming a 1:54.38 for the win. Much like we saw in the 100 breaststroke, Tierney, while very impressive, wasn’t quite as good as he was mid-year last season. Also like the 100 breaststroke, though, Tierney will hope to have his best times at NCAA’s rather than in November this season.
Canadian butterflier Mack Darragh and his training partners closed the individual events with one more 1-2-3 finish to really punctuate their scoring title. Darragh won the men’s 200 fly in 1:44.64, followed by Andrew Phillips in 1:45.46 and Daniel Graviss in 1:47.68. The Missouri men and women both looked very good at this meet, but it was the men’s depth and balance (including diving) that gave them an invite win as compared to the women’s 3rd-place finish.
The Tigers capped things off with a 2:53.70 in the 400 free relay, with all four swimmers going under 44 seconds. That includes a 43.5 Grodecki lead-off, a 43.2 from Chadwick, and a 43.1 from Logan Mosley.