Jayhawks take down heap of Mabee Center records versus William Jewell

Notes Final Results (.pdf)

LIBERTY, Mo. – What was supposed to be the Kansas swimming and diving team’s fastest away meet was made even faster by the eight Mabee Center pool records that the team shattered Thursday night. The Jayhawks occupied the top spot in all but one race en route to a 124-74 dual meet victory over William Jewell.
The eight pool records, which included two relays, were broken by a collection of nine Jayhawks. Despite it being KU’s first short-course meter competition, the Jayhawks had no trouble adjusting, starting off the meet with three-straight record-breaking performances.
The quartet of Elizabeth Amato-Hanner, Haley Downey, Yulduz Kuchkarova and Haley Bishop kicked off the night with a 1:58.26, 200M medley relay swim. It was a familiar experience for Kuchkarova, who was part of the relay team that set the previous record in January 2015.
Jenny Nusbaum left her mark on the pool record book by shaving just over one-tenth of a second off of teammate Lindsay Manning’s 800M freestyle record, set in 2015. Nusbaum recorded a time of 9:03.15.
Sammie Schurig, who led the team with two individual pool records Thursday night, continued the team’s hot start. She swam the 200M freestyle in 2:04.55, edging out the record set by Casey Jepsen of Truman State University in 2013. The trio of broken records set the tone for the Jayhawks, whose eight pool records Thursday night beat the team’s previous trip to the Mabee Center in 2015, where the team captured seven pool records.
“They really get into (breaking pool records),” head coach Clark Campbell said. “Swimming being a timed sport, they always want to break records. They saw them and got off to a hot start; the first few events broke some records. We kept it rolling and everyone was feeling good about themselves.”
Libby Walker captured her own Mabee Center record, cruising in the 400M IM for a time of 4:55.97, crushing the record set in 2014 by almost six seconds.
Kuchkarova, who took part in three record-breaking swims, claimed her own individual record in the 100M freestyle. The senior cut two seconds off of the record set in 2013 by Julia Madeira of the University of Indianapolis with her 57.16-second swim. Kuchkarova’s name adorns the Mabee Center record book for two individual swims, including the 200M backstroke, set in 2015.
Amato-Hanner claimed an individual pool record with her 1:04.36 second 100M backstroke swim. The record was previously held by senior teammate Hannah Angell in 2015.
Schurig’s second pool record, in the 400M freestyle, may have been the most impressive of the night. The senior blazed through the pool in 4:22.33, beating out a 35-year-old Mabee Center record.
“One of the records (Schurig) broke was in the 400 free, which was set in 1981 when (the Mabee Center) hosted the NAIA Nationals,” explained Campbell. “The summer it was set, it was one of the best times in the world.”
The dual and the record-breaking performances concluded with a record 200M freestyle relay swim from the team of Bishop, Carly Straight, Leah Pfitzer and Kuchkarova. Their 1:46.14 time outpaced the previous record, set by the University of Indianapolis in 2013, by five-and-a-half seconds.
The win and the redecoration of the Mabee Center record book left Campbell with a good feeling about Thursday night’s performance and the effect it will have on the team’s progression towards the Big 12 Championships in February.
“I was really happy,” he said. “We talked about going in and being really competitive and racing well. Of course, we don’t get a lot of reps with short course meters so the kids don’t really have an idea of what’s good or not, so we just got in and raced and had some really good races.”
Kansas will have a little over a week to practice before heading to Fayetteville on January 28 to take on Arkansas, where the team hopes to have a similar effect on the record books at Arkansas Natatorium.
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