Kansas dominates USD Shootout to cap California trip
Notes Final Results (.pdf)
SAN DIEGO – Kansas hit the pool for its second meet in less than 24 hours, making waves at the SportsCenter Pool in San Diego on Saturday in the USD Shootout. With four event victories and a number of great performances, the Jayhawks ran away with the meet, scoring 53 points to top North Texas, Colorado State and host San Diego, who scored 28, 27 and 16 points, respectively.
The Jayhawks’ big day started with a second-place finish in the 400-yard medley relay. The team of Elizabeth Amato-Hanner, Lydia Pocisk, Pia Pavlic and Carly Straight picked up four points for Kansas by edging a competitive North Texas team by six-hundredths of a second with a time of 3:54.69.
Libby Walker picked up the first victory of the day for Kansas, scoring nine points with a first-place finish in the 1,000-yard freestyle. Touching at 10:23.12, the sophomore coasted to the victory just ahead of teammate Jenny Nusbaum, who finished with a time of 10:25.96.
“It was a lot of fun to swim at the shootout today,” Nusbaum said. “Coming off the second-place finish in the 1,000, I just wanted to go out and do my best in the 200.”
Nusbaum did just that in the 200-yard freestyle, where she tallied nine points, finishing in first place to move the Jayhawks farther ahead on the leaderboard.
“Meets like this make me so excited for the rest of the season and conference,” Nusbaum continued. “We have an amazing team and our hard work is paying off.”
Madison Straight, coming off a victory in the 400-yard individual medley at the UCLA double dual a day earlier, finished second in the 200 IM with a time of 2:09.04 to add another four points to the KU total.
The Jayhawks dominated the 50-yard events, coming away with two victories and two second place finishes. Pavlic picked up arguably the most exciting win of the day, out-touching San Diego’s Dani Taylor by one-hundredth of a second in the 50-yard butterfly.
“To be honest I don’t really know how close the girl that placed second and I actually were,” Pavlic said. “I was just focused on my swimming and on correcting many mistakes that I did in my first and second 50. It was exciting to lead the team off with winning in the first set of 50s. Everyone was cheering so loud, the energy on our team was so high and amazing and I just soaked it all in and tried to win, not only for myself but also for the team.”
The short-distance domination continued, as Yulduz Kuchkarova coasted to a win in the 50-yard backstroke with a time of 26.45. Haley Bishop tabbed a second-place finish in the 50-yard breaststroke with a time of 30.56, and Haley Bishop took second in the 50-yard freestyle with a time of 24.37.
With 39 points and the victory already in hand with one event remaining, the Jayhawks continued to control the waters and added a victory and 11 points for good measure in the 400-yard freestyle relay. Carly Straight started things off for the Jayhawks with an opening leg of 54.20 to put the team in fourth as Nusbaum hit the water. As she had done all day, the Cary, North Carolina native took matters into her own hands and moved the Jayhawks back into the lead with a 51.89 lap. With the lead, Bishop took to the water but slipped the team back to third, falling behind to Colorado State and San Diego, but the senior Kuchkarova showed her leadership and posted the fastest leg in the entire race, clocking in with a 51.57 leg to give the team the win.
“Yulduz always makes sure to make the relay super exciting to watch,” Pavlic said. “The whole team is doing so good right now, not only at meets, but what’s even more important, at practices. We are less than 50 days away from our conference meet and we all carry a lot of energy in each practice which is really what matters the most. This team has an unlimited amount of potential so with time a little bit of rest and we’ll light it up in Austin.”
The Jayhawks next compete on January 21, as they travel to Liberty, Missouri to William Jewell at 6 p.m.
“Our meets are giving us good energy as we head to Coronado, California for training,” head coach Clark Campbell said. “Next week finishes up this phase of training and we are excited to do it outside.”
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