Feb. 22, 2013
MINNEAPOLIS -- Northwestern got four more individual scoring performances, including two in the championship final of the 3-meter springboard diving competition, Friday at the 2013 Big Ten Championships.
NU concluded the evening with 131 points, which placed the Wildcats in ninth place, just six points behind eighth place Nebraska. Northwestern leads 10th-place Iowa by 33 points.
Northwestern's diving Lenz sisters took center stage for the program Friday night, with both senior Felicitas Lenz (Altadena, Calif./Polytechnic School) and junior Cosima Lenz (Altadena, Calif./Polytechnic School) advancing to the championship final of the 3-meter springboard. Felicitas nailed a monster dive on her last attempt to move up to seventh place with a season-best 339.70 while Cosima's season-best 328.20 gave her the eighth and final spot in night diving by .60 of a point.
In the finals, Felicitas continued to score big points, moving up to fourth place overall with a near-career-best score of 348.20. Cosima moved up one spot to seventh with a 315.55. The pair combined for 27 points for NU in the event alone.
In the 400 IM Friday morning, junior Becca Soderholm (Madison, Wis./Madison East) and senior Meredith King (Lousville, Ky./duPont Manual) snuck into the scoring consolation final Friday night with NCAA `B' provisional qualifying times. Soderholm touched in 4:18.75, tying her for 15th overall after the morning. On the other side of that No. 16 spot was King, who knocked exactly two seconds from her seed time in the event to finish in 4:19.08 to place 17th overall. After a scratch, however, King earned the 16th and final position in the scoring consolation final Friday night.
The two Wildcats took advantage, each moving up for their seeds in the heat to garner more points for the team. Soderholm lowered her time to 4:17.93 Friday night to move up to 12th place while King moved up a spot to 15th with an evening swim of 4:19.86 to combine for seven points for the Wildcats.
Sophomore Valerie Nubbe (Huntsville, Ala./Huntsville) was Northwestern's top finisher in the 100 fly Friday morning with a career-best time of 56.28 to place 40th overall in that event.
One day after earning a bonus swim lane in the 500 free, freshman Ellen Anderson (Montgomery Village, Md./Gaithersburg) narrowly missed out on one in the 200 free Friday. Anderson swam a season-best 1:49.70 to place 29th overall, just .19 of a second away from 24th position and the final spot in the `C' heat Friday night. Junior Jackie Powell (Madison, Wis./James Madison Memorial), who missed much of the season with an injury so was not quite able to reach peak training prior to Big Tens, still had a nice season-best 1:50.35 swim to knock 1.25 seconds off her seed time and finish 38th.
Two Wildcats earned second swims in the 100 breast during preliminary qualification action, led by senior Katie McCullough (Grand Rapids, Mich./Forest Hills Central), who tore apart her career-best in the event by way more than a full second to swim a 1:03.06 and place 19th overall. Right behind McCullough in 20th was freshman Julianne Kurke (Atlanta, Ga./Parkview), who also cut more than one second from her previous best with a 1:03.08.
Neither Wildcat could quite match their time Friday night, with McCullough ending up 20th overall with a 1:03.60 and Kurke 21st with a 1:04.00.
Junior Megan Goss (Brentwood, Tenn./Ravenwood) also had a great swim in the 100 breast during the morning, lowering her career-best time by more than two seconds to 1:04.21, which placed her 32nd in the field.
Freshman Karen Turner (Lake Oswego, Ore./Lakeridge) was NU's top finisher in the 100 back in her first-career individual Big Ten Championships event. She shaved .21 of a second from her season-best to touch in 55.59 and place 29th overall. Sophomore Madeleine Klichowski (Chicago, Ill./Loyola Academy) was just one one-hundredth of a second away from her career-best time in the event, tying for 37th with a 56.41.
In Friday night's relay, the 400 medley, Northwestern's team of Turner, McCullough, Nubbe and Taylor Reynolds (St. Louis, Mo./Webster Groves) dropped over six seconds from its seed time to swim a ninth-place 3:41.99.
The final day of the 2013 Big Ten Championships gets underway Saturday, Feb. 23, with preliminary heats at 11 a.m. CT.
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