Kansas Improves In Pool, But Loses at Minnesota 206-87
Oct. 21, 2011
MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. — The Kansas swimming and diving team had strong performances from seniors Abigail Anderson and Stephanie Payne, but came up short against the Minnesota Golden Gophers 206-87, Friday evening at the University Aquatic Center in Minneapolis.
Payne finished third or better in events a total of three times, while Anderson tallied one top three finish in the Jayhawks first of back-to-back dual meets.
“We were really happy with the way we performed, even though the final score was not reflective of that,” said head coach Clark Campbell. “We took several steps forward from the meet two weeks ago at Arizona.”
KU swimmers and divers finished in the top three places of an event 14 times during the meet on Friday, but ultimately it was not enough as the Golden Gophers moved to 3-0 on the season and Kansas fell to 0-2.
“Abigail Anderson really stepped up today and did well,” Campbell said. “Rebecca Swank, Morgan Sharp, Malia Johnson and Vanessa Hanbury all had a really good meets as well, so we had several swimmers join the three (Stephanie Payne, Brooke Brull, Deanna Marks), who have been doing it all year.”
Aside from the seniors, sophomores Malia Johnson and Alison Lusk both had a second place finish to hang their cap on, while fellow sophomore Morgan Sharp had a pair of top three performances. Junior transfer Vanessa Hanbury continued to impress her new coach, as she was the fastest Jayhawk swimmer in two events.
On the boards, sophomores Christy Cash and Alyssa Golden had strong showings. Cash finished second in the three-meter (262.20) and third in the one-meter (261.97), while Golden finished right behind her diving counterpart in the three-meter event, with a 239.63 score.
Kansas now has just hours to shift their focus from their challenging meet with Minnesota to an equally tough test against Northern Iowa and North Dakota tomorrow morning in Cedar Rapids.
“This will be a test to see how tough the team is,” Campbell said. “This is a very difficult set of meets back-to-back, because we are on the road and will have a three and a half hour bus ride to Cedar Falls. Once we get there, we will go straight to bed and then will have to get up tomorrow and perform at a very high level at 11 a.m.”
The double-dual meet Saturday morning will be KU’s first of the season and will feature two opponents that the Jayhawks defeated last season. Still, Campbell thinks the start time of the meet will help his swimmers as much as the two schools they will be competing against.
“This is good preparation because preliminaries at championship meets are at 11:00,” he said. “Part of doing well at this level is being able to swim fast in the morning, so this really helps our mentality down the line.”
Kansas will look replicate their past success over the Panthers and Fighting Sioux as they came out on top 161-91 and 195-119 respectively in meets during the 2010-11 season. A sweep by the Jayhawks in tomorrow’s double-dual would enable them to even their record and move to .500 on the season.
Action between Kansas and UNI/North Dakota starts at 11 a.m. central time at the Glen F. Henry Pool in Cedar Falls. Log onto kuathletics.com for post-meet interviews, recaps and final results.