Minnesota’s Sprint Group Gets Big Addition from Olivia Wanner (2024)

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After growing up and attending high school in Waukesha, Wisconsin, Olivia Wanner has announced her decision to head even further North in the fall of 2024, committing to swim at the University of Minnesota. Wanner is currently finishing her junior year at Waukesha West High School while swimming club with the Waukesha Express Swim Team.

“I chose the University of Minnesota because of the fantastic academic opportunities and athletic resources that will help me be successful in and out of the pool. I want to be a part of a program with a positive culture and I felt an immediate connection with the team and coaches Minneapolis is also a beautiful city and not too far from home.”

Last November, Wanner came home from the 2022 WIAA Division 1 Swimming and Diving State Championships with a pair of bronze medals. Hitting lifetime bests in both sprint freestyle events, she stopped the clock at 23.09 in the 50 free and 49.92 in the 100 free.

Since that meet, she has gone on to stop the clock faster in both races. Most recently at the NCSA Spring Championships, she dipped below 23.0 in the 50 free for the first time, taking 9th in 22.94. She also added finals appearances (and lifetime bests) in the 100 free (49.74) and 200 free (1:49.02).

Wanner was the champion in both the 50 and 100 freestyles at the Wisconsin LSC Championships at the end of last summer while racing in the long course pool. She claimed the 50 free title in 26.35 before posting a lifetime best of 57.35 to win the 100 free.

Best Times (SCY)

  • 50 free – 22.94
  • 100 free – 49.68
  • 200 free – 1:49.02
  • 500 free – 5:02.25

Even with a year left of high school before joining the Golden Gophers, Wanner is already poised to be a huge addition to the program’s sprint-free group when she arrives on campus next year. During the 2022-23 school year Minnesota only had three girls faster than 23.0 in the 50 free and five under 50.0 in the 100 free.

Not only will Wanner make an impact on the program’s roster, but she’ll also be within scoring range at the Big-10 Championships immediately after arriving on campus. In 2023, she would have finished in the C-final of the 100 free and just missed earning a second swim in the 50 free and 200 free. She’ll have another year of high school to improve before even joining the team.

The 50 and 100 freestyle events have been a weakness for Minnesota in recent years, with the team not having won a Big-10 title in either since 2009 (Stacy Busack in the 100 free). The program didn’t have any swimmers in the A-final of either event at the 2023 Big-10 Championships. Last season, the top performances came from sophomore Hannah Cornish, who finished in the B-final of both races. Cornish will be a senior when Wanner arrives on campus in 2024.

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