Minneapolis – After taking a commanding lead with a 287-point day one showing at the 2014 Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Championships, the Gustavus women’s swimming and diving team upped the ante and showed no signs of slowing down with an even more impressive day two. The Gusties tallied 309.5 points on Friday to build on an already commanding lead that sees them in first place with 596.5 points two-thirds of the way through the competition. St. Thomas is in second with 449 points, while St. Olaf rounds out the top three in third with 340.5 points.
In the opening swimming event of Friday’s finals session, the 200-medley relay team comprised of Alissa Tinklenberg (Sr., Willmar, Minn.), Laura Drake (Sr., Mendota Heights, Minn.), Danielle Klunk (Jr., Appleton, Wis.), and Katie Olson (Jr., North Oaks, Minn.) set the tone with a record-breaking performance. The group took first place with a time of 1:43.79, breaking the MIAC, meet, and Gustavus school record in the process. St. Thomas held the previous MIAC and meet record with a 1:44.79 set at the MIAC Championships last season. The previous school record time was recorded earlier this season by Tinklenberg, Jennifter Strom (Jr., Rochester, Minn.), Kayla Hutsell (Jr., Apple Valley, Minn.), and Olson.
Staying true to form, Alissa Tinklenberg continued to shine on an individual level. The reigning MIAC Swimmer-of-the-Year captured her third straight gold medal in the 100 backstroke after touching the wall in 55:26. Tinklenberg’s time tonight bested her MIAC and school record mark of 55.55 set in December of 2013 earlier this season. The meet record of 56.29 was held by Carleton’s Kale Zicafoose and set at the 2011 MIAC Championships.
Hayley Booher (Fy., Warren, Vt.) led the way in a Gustavus dominated 400 individual medley. Booher won the first MIAC race of her collegiate career by finishing in 4:30.77 – nearly four seconds faster than her qualifying time posted earlier in the day. Behind Booher was Kristin Podratz (Fy., Eagan, Minn.) in second with a time of 4:39.44, and Abby Lyle (Sr., Buffalo, Wy.) in third with a time of 4:39.56. Gustavus also took the top four spots in the 200 IM on day one.
Gustavus’s final first place performance of day two was supplied by Jennifer Strom. For the third year in a row, Strom seized the top spot of the podium in the 100 breaststroke, touching up in 1:03.78. Tarin Anding (So., Sartell, Minn.) finished fourth (1:05.58) in the race, while Laura Drake took fifth (1:06.05).
Turning in Gustavus’s other record-breaking performance was Danielle Klunk who placed second in the 200 butterfly with a school-record time of 56.91. Klunk’s swim edged Stephanie Korba’s record of 57.73 set in 2010.
In the final women’s event of the evening, Katie Olson, Leah Anderson (So., Apple Valley, Minn.), Hayley Booher, and Jennifer Strom finished runner-up in the 800-free relay with a time of 7:41.15.
The top three finishers in each event – including relays – earned All-Conference honors for their performances, and were awarded medals. Complete team standings and Friday’s All-Conference honorees are listed below.
The 2014 MIAC Swimming and Diving Championships will continue with two more sessions Saturday (Feb. 15) at the University of Minnesota Aquatic Center. The final morning session features preliminary races and will begin at 10:30 a.m., and the last evening finals sessions will start at 6:30 p.m. The doors open at 9 a.m. for the morning session, and again at 3 p.m. for the final session of the meet.
Spectators are welcome at all sessions, and there are two different options for purchasing tickets. Single-session tickets will be sold, costing $8 for adults and $4 for students. Fans will also have the option to buy an All-Session Pass for $40 (adults) or $20 (students). Heat sheets are included in the price of admission and will be available at the ticket window. Children 5 and under will be admitted free, and MIAC passes will be honored. No other passes or discounts will be accepted.
If fans can’t make it to Minneapolis, there are several ways they can track the action from afar. The MIAC has again teamed up with Webcast America to offer a live video/audio webcast of all six sessions. Webcast America will also offer archives of the sessions on its website for on-demand viewing, or purchase on DVD. There will also be “live” results available online with times and scores updated shortly following each event.
Complete information and coverage of the 2014 MIAC Swimming and Diving Championships can be found on the MIAC’s event home page. Throughout the championships, the page will include the event schedules, venue information, ticket information, psych sheets, heat sheets, results, recaps, photo galleries, highlight videos, helpful links and more. Fans can connect throughout the meet via social media, using the official hashtag #MIACSD on Twitter.