Michigan’s Maggie MacNeil Wins BigTen Swimmer of the Meet for 2nd Straight Year

Braden Keith
by Braden Keith 3

February 28th, 2021 News


While the Ohio State Buckeyes took home the team trophy, it as 2nd-place Michigan, 5th-place Wisconsin, and 7th-place Nebraska that took home the top individual honors at the 2021 Big Ten Women’s Swimming & Diving Championships.


  1. Ohio State – 1584
  2. Michigan – 1326.5
  3. Indiana – 1066.5
  4. Northwestern – 992
  5. Wisconsin – 749.5
  6. Minnesota – 555
  7. Nebraska – 542.5
  8. Iowa – 424
  9. Purdue – 414
  10. Penn State – 410
  11. Michigan State – 217
  12. Ilinois – 177
  13. Rutgers – 60

Individual Awards

  • Swimmer of the Championships: Maggie MacNeil, Jr., Michigan
  • Diver of the Championship: Abigail Knapton, Sr., Nebraska
  • Freshman of the Year: Phoebe Bacon, Wisconsin

MacNeil was named the Swimmer of the Championships for the second-straight season after being named the Freshman of the Year in 2019.

Throughout the week, she won the 50 free (21.44), 100 fly (49.68), and 100 free (47.36) individually, with the first two races being NCAA Automatic Qualifying Times.

MacNeil was the only triple winning swimmer of the meet. The top scoring swimmers of the week include:

  1. Maggie MacNeil, Jr., Michigan – 96 points (1st – 50 free; 1st – 100 fly; 1st – 100 free)
  2. (TIE) Kristen Romano, Sr., Ohio State – 92 points (1st – 200 IM; 1st – 400 IM; 2nd – 200 back)/Phoebe Bacon, Fr., Wisconsin – (2nd – 200 IM; 1st – 100 back; 1st – 200 back)
  3. Olivia Carter, Jr., Michigan – 87 Points (3rd – 200 IM; 2nd – 100 fly; 1st – 200 fly)
  4. Madeline Smith, Sr., Northwestern – 81.5 Points (3rd – 50 free; 3rd – 100 fly; 2nd – 100 free)

MacNeil also led off Michigan’s 3rd-place 200 medley rely with a 23.02, marking the fastest 50 backstroke in history.

Other relay swims include a 50.08 leadoff on Michigan’s 3rd-place 400 medley relay, a 21.50 leadoff on Michigan’s 2nd-place 200 free relay, and finally a leadoff of 47.47 on Michigan’s winning 400 free relay to close the meet.

Bacon, meanwhile, picked up the backstroke and IM torch for the Badgers where 2020 senior Beata Nelson left it off. Bacon finished 2nd in the 200 IM to open the meet in 1:55.55 and then won the 100 back in 51.32 and the 200 back in 1:50.90.

That 1:50.90 in the 200 back is the fastest time ever swum by a Big Ten freshman, surpassing her own dual meet time of 1:51.63 and, more broadly, the 2015 time of 1:51.76 done by Michigan’s Clara Smiddy.

Meanwhile in West Lafayette, where Purdue hosted both men’s and women’s diving, Nebraska redshirt senior Abi Knapton had a breakthrough meet. A top-ranked platform diver nationally throughout her career, Knapton showed three-event versatility last week by winning Big Ten titles in the platform and 1-meter events and finishing in 2nd place on 3-meter.

The two wins, after redshirting last season, were the first Big Ten titles in her career. Her 92 diving points were the most ever scored by a Husker diver in a single conference championship meet. She became the first Nebraska diver to win a conference title since Julie Grimmer won the 3-meter at the 1995 Big Eight Championships and the first Nebraska diver to win 2 conference titles in the same meet since Julie May swept the springboard events at the 1989 Big Eight Championships.

First team
Anne Fowler, Indiana
Emily Weiss, Indiana
Kathryn Ackerman, Michigan
Olivia Carter, Michigan
Megan Glass, Michigan
Sophie Housey, Michigan
Maggie MacNeil, Michigan
Daria Pyshnenko, Michigan
Sierra Schmidt , Michigan
Kaitlynn Sims, Michigan
Autumn Haebig, Nebraska
Abigail Knapton, Nebraska
Hannah Bach, Ohio State
Emily Crane, Ohio State
Amy Fulmer, Ohio State
Taylor Petrak, Ohio State
Freya Rayne, Ohio State
Kristen Romano, Ohio State
Veronica Tafuto, Ohio State
Katie Trace, Ohio State
Katherine Zenick, Ohio State
Phoebe Bacon, Wisconsin

Second team
Josephine Grote, Indiana
Abby Kirkpatrick, Indiana
Noelle Peplowski, Indiana
Ella Ristic, Indiana
Claire Newman, Michigan
Sophie Angus, Northwestern
Miriam Guevara, Northwestern
Emma Lepisova, Northwestern
Madeline Smith, Northwestern
Maggie Merriman, Purdue

Sportsmanship Award
Cara Bognar, Illinois
Anne Rouleau, Indiana
Lexi Horner, Iowa
Sierra Schmidt, Michigan
Taylor Arnold, Michigan State
Sarah Bacon, Minnesota
Katelyn Kilpatrick, Nebraska
Becky Kamau, Northwestern
Katie Trace, Ohio State
Riley Kishman, Purdue
Stephanie Szekely, Penn State
Yael Weber, Rutgers
Savanna Carlson, Wisconsin

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2 years ago

Why doesn’t this headline acknowledge that Ohio State won BACK TO BACK titles. Haters.

Jay Ryan
2 years ago

Maggie McNeil is really good.

Reply to  Jay Ryan
2 years ago

The hot take of the year. 🙂

About Braden Keith

Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder/co-owner of SwimSwam.com. He first got his feet wet by building The Swimmers' Circle beginning in January 2010, and now comes to SwimSwam to use that experience and help build a new leader in the sport of swimming. Aside from his life on the InterWet, …

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