Padington Hits Her Stride as FSU, Minnesota Split Dual Meet


  • Results
  • Hosted by FSU
  • Saturday, October 7th
  • 25 Yards
  • Dual Meet Format


  • MEN: Florida State 179, Minnesota 121
  • WOMEN: Minnesota 153.5, Florida State 146.5

Florida State and Minnesota met for a dual meet in Tallahassee on Saturday, with the teams splitting the wins. On the women’s side, Minnesota outlasted the Seminoles, winning with 153.5 points to FSU’s 146.5 points. The Florida State men, however, were able to take down Minnesota 179-121.

Minnesota freshman Mackenzie Padington, a Canadian Olympic Trials finalist, had a strong showing in her first ever yards meet. Padington stole the show in the 200 free, running away with it in 1:46.85. She and teammate Chantal Nack (1:49.34) were the only swimmers to break 1:50. Next, Padington was even more dominant in the 500 free, touching in 4:46.77 ahead of All-American teammate Brooke Zeiger (4:59.93). Her relay splits were also impressive, as she split a 22.54 to anchor the 200 medley relay and a 22.48 on the 2nd leg of the 200 free relay.

The Gophers got a pair of wins each from Zoe Avestruz and Danielle Nack. In the butterflies, Nack picked up the sweep, first dominating the 200 fly in 2:01.68. In the 100 fly, she used her front half speed to take the edge over FSU’s Elise Olsen, winning the race 54.79 to 55.38. Avestruz, on the other hand, came through in the sprint events, winning with times of 23.08 in the 50 free and 50.74 in the 100 free.

All-American Natalie Pierce was the top performer for the Noles on the women’s side. After putting up a 27.69 breast split to help her team win the 200 medley relay, she went on to touch 1st in both breaststrokes. In the 100 breast, she trailed Minnesota’s Lindsey Kozelsky (1:02.41) at the halfway point, but powered through the back half to win it in 1:01.74. They returned to battle in the 200 breast, with Kozelsky leading through the 150. Pierce kicked it up a notch with a 33.90 to run her down in the final 50 yards. At the finish, they both touched in 2:15.68 for a tie.

On the men’s side, Chad Mylin and Kanoa Kaleoaloha, both members of the scoring 200 free relay at NCAAs last season, each put up a highlight swim. Mylin’s victory came in his signature 50 free, as he touched the wall in 20.09 ahead of Will Pisani (20.53), another member of that 200 free relay, for a 1-2 finish. Kaleoaloha picked up a win in the 100 fly, touching in 47.83 ahead of Minnesota’s Tuomas Pokkinen (48.64).

Kaleoaloha also helped his team to a pair of 1-2 finishes in the free races. In the 100 free, he took 2nd behind Felipe Ribeiro de Souza (44.69), touching in 45.23. His other 2nd place finish came in the 200 free, where he trailed teammate Rudo Loock (1:37.85) with his 1:38.67.

Minnesota’s Conner McHugh and Nick Plachinski each picked up a sweep for the Gophers. McHugh put up a 55.92 to outpace FSU’s Julio Horrego (56.41) in the 100 breast and was the only man to break 2:00 with his winning time of 1:59.86 in the 200 breast. Plachinski picked up his wins in the distance races, leading a 1-2 finish in the 1000 free (9:28.06) with Justin Torres (9:29.90). In the 500 free, Plachinski rolled to a 4:34.62 ahead of teammate Nicholas Saulnier (4:36.52).


TALLAHASSEE, Fla. –  The Florida State swimming and diving teams split a top 25 clash with Minnesota on Saturday in the opening dual meet of the 2017-18 season at the Morcom Aquatics Center in front of family and friends for the annual ‘Paint it Pink’ meet.

The 20th-ranked men’s team (1-0) took down the 21st-ranked Gophers, 179-121, while the (No. 23) women (0-1) battled through the last relay but fell 153.5-146.5 to No. 17 Minnesota.

“It was an amazing meet,” FSU head coach Neal Studd said. “The team really stepped up today and I could not be prouder. It was a very special day.”

After taking first and second in the opening 200 medley relay, the men kept rolling taking first and second in the 200 free as sophomore Rudo Loock won with a time of 1:37.85, just ahead of junior Kanoa Kaleoaloha (1:38.67) who was second.  Kaleoaloha added an impressive win in the 100 fly later in the meet, touching at 47.83.

The Seminoles found their stride after the 100 back, when senior Connor Kalisz won from the outside lane with a time of 49.24 just ahead of sophomore Nate Samson in second (50.78). Kalisz (1:49.12) later fished second behind sophomore Griffin Alaniz in the 200 back (1:48.95).

Minnesota took the 100 breast, but answered with a huge one-two finish in the 200 fly behind sophomore Max Polianski (1:50.05) and senior Jacob Urbano (1:50.61), just ahead of UM’s Matt Thomas (1:50.93). Both Polianski and Urbano took the lead on the final 50 yards of the race.

Florida State capitalized on the back-to-back sprint events with a pair of sweeps. Senior Chad Mylin led the 50 free with a time of 20.09 ahead of juniors William Pisani (20.53) and Emir Muratovic (20.82).

After the break, sophomore Felipe Ribeiro de Souza won the 100 free (44.69), Kaleoaloha was second (45.23), Murtovic took third (45.58) and sophomore Vladimir Stefanik rounded out the Noles in fourth (45.64).

On the boards, the Seminoles showed their depth as senior Tyler Roberge first dominated 3-meter with a score of 389.18 ahead of his rookie teammate Joshua Davidson in second (376.95). In their second event, the Noles put up a sweep of 1-meter led by Davidson with a score of 341.55, Roberge in second 325.20 and sophomore Cameron Thatcher at 322.10 in third.

Florida State closed out the meet with a dominating performance in the 200 free relay behind Mylin, Pisani, junior John Vann and Muratovic at 1:20.66.

The women’s meet came down to the final relay, with the Seminoles trailing by two points.

Sophomore Nika Blank, Lelia Johnson and senior Ariel Barber handed the anchor leg to senior Alexi Smith, who put up the fastest split of the event (22.41) however Minnesota held on by one-one hundredth of a second, putting the Noles at 1:31.58 for second.

Prior to the final relay, junior Shelly Drozda dug deep to win the 200 IM at 2:03.22 in order to give the Noles a chance after adding a second place finish in the 200 back (1:59.45) as well a third place showing in the 200 free (1:51.85).

The Seminoles also got a huge boost from diving, as three ladies scored above the 300-point barrier to sweep 3-meter heading into the final two events.

Senior Blaire Mulka led the charge, winning with a score of 315.35 while sophomores Ayla Bonniwell (314.93) and Molly Carlson (303.23) followed in second and third respectively.

Earlier in the meet, Carlson and Mulka teamed up for the one-two punch as Carlson posted 280.95 for the win and Mulka followed in second at 278.40.

“I am really proud of the hard work these guys have put in already this year and we haven’t even really got going yet,” FSU head diving coach John Proctor said. They are really coming together as a family and supporting each other and pushing each other to train at their limits. It’s great to see them rewarded with a great performance like they had today. They worked for it and they earned it.”

The Seminoles also showed their strength in the opening medley relay behind the team of freshman Madeline Cohen, senior Natalie Pierce, Johnston and Smith, winning by over one second with a time of 1:40.81.

Pierce ended a three-event slide, cruising to a win in the 100 breast at 1:01.74 and redshirt junior McKenna Harris picked up valuable third place points at 1:04.72.  Pierce also came through to tie for first in the 200 breast, touching at 2:15.68 as Harris held on for third (2:20.04).

Minnesota won the 200 fly, however the Noles eliminated any damage by finishing second, third, fourth and fifth behind sophomore Macie Beairsto (2:04.57), freshman Kathryn Petrone (2:05.39), rookie Madi Tyle (2:06.14) and junior Meg Brown (2:07.19).

Smith and Blank put up a pair of second and third place finishes in the 50 and 100 free, as Smith clocked at 23.18 in the 50 free and 51.00 in the 100. Blank touched at 23.52 and 51.59.

Florida State will travel to Durham, N.C. for an ACC contest against (No.20/NA) Duke and (NA/No.19) Virginia Tech on Friday at 5 p.m. and Saturday at 11 a.m.

For more information on Florida State swimming and diving visit Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.


TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – The season opener came down to one-one hundredth of a second for the No. 17 Minnesota women’s swimming and diving team who edged their way past No. 23 Florida State, 153.5-146.5. The No. 21 Golden Gopher men’s swim and diving team fell short of an upset over No. 20. Florida State falling 179-121.

“Our results were what they were today,” head coach Kelly Kremer said. “I really like what I see from this team and there will certainly be better days ahead for this group as they continue with the learning process.”

Women | #17 Minnesota 153.5 , #23 Florida State 146.5

Minnesota was hanging by a thread holding a 2.5 point lead heading into the final event of the 200 free relay. The crew of Zoe Avetruz, Mackenzie Padington, Danielle Nack and Kaia Grobe posted a first place finish in the 200 free relay with a time of 1:31.57 adding 11 points to secure the victory for Minnesota.

“I thought we had outstanding meets today from Mackenzie Padington, Zoe Avestruz, Chantal Nack, Danielle Nack and Lindsey Kozelsky,” Kremer said. “The end of the women’s meet was what we all want from sports. Exciting and down to the wire.”

Minnesota started strong from the start with three top-five finished in the 1000 free tallying 12 early points for the Gophers. Senior Brooke Zeiger claimed the top spot with a time of 10:14.59.

Minnesota continued to hold strong down the stretch as a pair of freshman making their Minnesota debut posted top-five finishes in the 200 free. Padington captured the first place finish (1:46.85) while Kasey Milstroh added a point for the Gophers with a fifth place finish (1:57.04). Chantal Nack added four points to the Gophers team total with a second place finish in a time of 1:49.34.

Mariam Khamis led the way for the Gophers in the diving category. Khamis placed fourth in 3-meter diving (297.15) and third in the 1-meter (270.38). Morgan Justice added a pair of points with a fifth place finish in the 3-meter (272.48) and 1-meter (240.68).

Tied at 103.5 Minnesota turned the tides in their direction with a sweep of the top three spots in the 200 breast. Padington posted another first place finish with a time of 4:46.77, while Zeiger came in second (4:59.93) and Abbey Erwin placed third (5:03.64) in her Golden Gopher debut.

The Gophers never looked back from the 13 point swing hanging on for their first dual win of the season.

Men | #20 Florida State 179, #21 Minnesota 121

Despite trailing from the start, Minnesota saw strong showings from senior captain Conner McHugh and junior Nick Plachinski. McHugh captured two of the four Gophers first place finishes on the day competing in the 100 breast (55.92) and 200 breast (1:59.86). Plachinski nabbed the other two first place finishes for the Gophers completing the 1000 free in 9:28.06 and 500 free in 4:34.62.

Freshman Tim Sates earned the Maroon and Gold five individual points in his debut, swimming the 200 free in 1:39.37 for a third place finish and the 100 free in 46.01 for fifth.

On the diving side of things, Nick Yang in the 3-meter had the highest finish for the Gophers with 359.25 points placing him third. On the 1-meter board, the Gophers were led by freshman Maxim Royzen who’s first place finish of 377.13 points now ranks him with the sixth highest score in program history.

Up Next

Minnesota returns to the pool on Friday, Oct. 27 as they travel to Iowa City, Iowa to talk on the Iowa Hawkeyes in a Big Ten dual meet.

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NM Coach
3 years ago

Why didn’t Bowen Becker swim? Not sure he could’ve made up the 58 point difference that the Gopher Men lost by but he would’ve definitely helped their relays immensely.

About Lauren Neidigh

Lauren Neidigh

Lauren Neidigh is a former NCAA swimmer at the University of Arizona (2013-2015) and the University of Florida (2011-2013). While her college swimming career left a bit to be desired, her Snapchat chin selfies and hot takes on Twitter do not disappoint. She's also a high school graduate of The …

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