Week #11: Wolverines Look to Peak at Big Ten Championships
Caitlin Dauw

Feb. 13, 2012

Big Ten Release

Wed-Sat., Feb. 15-18 -- at Big Ten Championships (Iowa City, Iowa), 11 a.m./6:30 p.m. CST [ Live Results | Schedule of Events | Big Ten Network (tape-delay, Feb. 25 at 11 a.m.) ]

The postseason begins this week for the No. 17-ranked University of Michigan women's swimming and diving team (5-6, 3-3 Big Ten) as the Wolverines prepare for the 2012 Big Ten Championships, which start Wednesday (Feb. 15) and run through Saturday (Feb. 18) at the Campus Recreation and Wellness Center in Iowa City, Iowa.

The meet kicks off with two relays on Wednesday at 6:30 p.m. CST. The remaining three days will see preliminaries begin at 11 a.m., with finals at 6:30 p.m.

The Big Ten Network will televise a compacted version of the Big Ten Championships on Saturday, Feb. 25, at 11 a.m. EST. Bernie Guenther will have the call, and he will be joined by analysts Kaitlin Sandeno and Gretchen Plamondon.

Michigan at Big Ten Championships
Michigan is the only women's team in the history of the Big Ten Conference to win 12 straight Big Ten Championships (1987-98) and leads the Big Ten in team (14) and individual conference championships (177). Additionally, Michigan has crowned at least one Big Ten champion in all but one year under head coach Jim Richardson (2001-02).

What Happened Last Year
Without Jim Richardson in attendance (illness), the Wolverines finished sixth at the Big Ten Championships last season in Bloomington, Ind. As a team, Michigan recorded 28 NCAA consideration times, 60 season-best times, set three new school records and won one individual and one relay conference championship.

The Wolverines' sixth-place finish snapped a stretch of eight straight top-four team finishes, dating back to 2002, where they were fifth. The Wolverines won the team title in 2004, and were second in 2007 and 2008, third in 2006 and 2010, and fourth in 2003, 2005 and 2009.

Big Ten Champions
The Wolverines have two Big Ten champions on their roster, both coming at last season's meet. Senior Caitlin Dauw won the 100-yard butterfly crown, and assisted on the winning 200-yard freestyle relay team, which also consisted of returnees Deirdre Jones and Alexa Mehesan. The quartet took the top spot after the Wisconsin relay team was disqualified.

Record Holders
Michigan holds five Big Ten Championships records:
• 1,650-yard freestyle: Emily Brunemann, 15:51.29 (2008)
• 100-yard butterfly: Caroline Rodriguez, 51.85 - preliminaries (2009)
• 200-yard individual medley: Margaret Kelly, 1:56.80 (2008)
• One-meter diving (11 dives): Mary Fischbach, 520.50 (1988)
• Platform diving (11 dives): Cinnamon Woods, 587.05 (1994)


Familiar Setting ... While on its first trip to Iowa in 19 years, Michigan won the Hawkeye Invitational, held Dec. 2-4, dominating the eight-team field while establishing numerous meet and pool records. The Wolverines' swimmers came into the meet not having achieved an NCAA 'B' time in any race all season but left Iowa with 23 of them, and achieved season-best times in every race. [ Recap ]

The Status of Streaks ... Two of Michigan's top swimmers have been near perfect this season in the pool. Iowa native Alexa Mehesan (West Des Moines) is 7-1 in the 50-yard freestyle this season, with her only loss coming to Ohio State's Megan Detro on Jan. 21. Senior butterflier Caitlin Dauw remains unbeaten in the 100-yard butterfly (7-0).

Stepping Up ... Backstroker Ashley Cohagen has received NCAA 'B' times in seven races (three individual, four relay) and holds team-best times in the 100 and 200-yard backstroke. She has already set new career highs in both those races this season (54.19 in 100-yard backstroke; 1:55.87 in 200-yard backstroke, both set at 2011 Big Ten Championships). [ Wolverine To Watch ]

Lohman On Fire ... Senior diver Amanda Lohman clinched the Wolverines' upset victory over then-No. 8 Indiana on Jan. 7 after winning the three-meter diving competition. She has scored above a 345.00 on the three-meter board in each of the last three dual meets of the season and was Big Ten Diver of the Week three times during the month of January.

Last Time Out ... The Wolverines closed out the dual-meet portion of their schedule back on Jan. 27, beating in-state rival Michigan State, 171-120, inside Canham Natatorium. Michigan won 13 of the meet's 16 events (and had top times in an additional two races despite being exhbitioned), beating the Spartans for the 24th straight time.

Ranked Again ... Michigan climbed five spots to No. 17 in the most-recent CollegeSwimming.com/CSCAA Coaches Top 25 poll, released on Jan. 25 [ Poll ]

2011-12 Top Times/Scores
50-yard Freestyle: 22.74, Alexa Mehesan (Dec. 2 at Hawkeye Invitational)
100-yard Freestyle: 49.76, Alexa Mehesan (Dec. 4 at Hawkeye Invitational)
200-yard Freestyle: 1:49.09, Kristyne Cole (Dec. 3 at Hawkeye Invitational)
500-yard Freestyle: 4:45.35, Adrienne Bicek (Dec. 2 at Hawkeye Invitational)
1,650-yard Freestyle: 16:26.16, Adrienne Bicek (Dec. 4 at Hawkeye Invitational)
100-yard Butterfly: 52.50, Caitlin Dauw (Dec. 3 at Hawkeye Invitational)
200-yard Butterfly: 1:57.42, Caitlin Dauw (Dec. 4 at Hawkeye Invitational)
100-yard Backstroke: 54.08, Ashley Cohagen (Dec. 3 at Hawkeye Invitational)
200-yard Backstroke: 1:55.78, Ashley Cohagen (Dec. 4 at Hawkeye Invitational)
100-yard Breaststroke: 1:01.27, Angela Chokran (Dec. 3 at Hawkeye Invitational)
200-yard Breaststroke: 2:11.42, Angela Chokran (Dec. 2 at Hawkeye Invitational)
200-yard IM: 2:02.07, Angela Chokran (Dec. 2 at Hawkeye Invitational)
400-yard IM: 4:15.33, Adrienne Bicek (Dec. 3 at Hawkeye Invitational)
One-meter Diving: 323.77, Amanda Lohman (Jan. 27 vs. Michigan State)
Three-meter Diving: 363.15, Amanda Lohman (Jan. 27 vs. Michigan State)
Platform Diving: 263.40, Amanda Lohman (Dec. 4 at Hawkeye Invitational)
200-yard Freestyle Relay: 1:31.50, Mehesan, Cohagen, Jones, Dauw (Dec. 2 at Hawkeye Invitational)
400-yard Freestyle Relay: 3:19.99, Mehesan, Cohagen, Liz Johnson, Dauw (Dec. 4 at Hawkeye Invitational)
800-yard Freestyle Relay: 7:20.61, Bicek, Cole, Fayhee, Liz Johnson (Dec. 3 at Hawkeye Invitational)
200-yard Medley Relay: 1:39.18, Cohagen, Chokran, Dauw, Mehesan (Dec. 3 at Hawkeye Invitational)
400-yard Medley Relay: 3:38.03, Cohagen, Chokran, Dauw, Mehesan (Dec. 2 at Hawkeye Invitational)

Making the Mark
The following swimmers have earned NCAA consideration times:

Julia Andracki
100-yard Breaststroke (1:02.66)

Adrienne Bicek
500-yard Freestyle (4:45.35)
1,650-yard Freestyle (16:26.16)
400-yard Individual Medley (4:15.33)
800-yard Freestyle Relay (7:20.61)

Angela Chokran
100-yard Breaststroke (1:01.27)
200-yard Breaststroke (2:11.42)
200-yard Medley Relay (1:39.18)
400-yard Medley Relay (3:38.03)

Ashley Cohagen
100-yard Butterfly (54.32)
100-yard Backstroke (54.08)
200-yard Backstroke (1:55.78)
200-yard Freestyle Relay (1:31.50)
400-yard Freestyle Relay (3:19.99)
200-yard Medley Relay (1:39.18)
400-yard Medley Relay (3:38.03)

Kristyne Cole
500-yard Freestyle (4:46.47)
800-yard Freestyle Relay (7:20.61)

Caitlin Dauw
50-yard Freestyle (22.89)
100-yard Butterfly (52.50)
200-yard Butterfly (1:57.42)
200-yard Freestyle Relay (1:31.50)
400-yard Freestyle Relay (3:19.99)
200-yard Medley Relay (1:39.18)
400-yard Medley Relay (3:38.03)

Kally Fayhee
800-yard Freestyle Relay (7:20.61)

Liz Johnson
400-yard Freestyle Relay (3:19.99)
800-yard Freestyle Relay (7:20.61)

Deirdre Jones
200-yard Freestyle Relay (1:31.50)

Melissa Lang
100-yard Breaststroke (1:02.22)
200-yard Breaststroke (2:14.90)

Alexa Mehesan
50-yard Freestyle (22.74)
100-yard Freestyle (49.76)
100-yard Butterfly (53.94)
200-yard Freestyle Relay (1:31.50)
400-yard Freestyle Relay (3:19.99)
200-yard Medley Relay (1:39.18)
400-yard Medley Relay (3:38.03)

Additionally, divers Erin Bridgewater, Carey Chen, Amanda Lohman and Marina Nazario have qualified for the NCAA Zone C Diving Meet, to be held from March 8-10 in Bloomington, Ind. Lohman and Chen have qualifying scores on all three boards, while Bridgewater has two (one-meter, three-meter). Nazario has qualified on the three-meter board only.

Upset City! ... Michigan's biggest victory of the season came back on Jan. 7 when it upset No. 8 Indiana, 151.5-148.5, inside Canham Natatorium. The Wolverines won six individual races (finishing 1-2-3 in two races) and one relay, but the meet came down to the three-meter diving competition, which was won by Michigan senior diver Amanda Lohman, who scored a career-high 360.60 to secure the win.

Lohman's three-meter score was the highest by a Michigan diver in at least seven seasons. She was named to the Primetime Performers Weekly Honor Roll by College Sports360.com. Lohman and senior Caitlin Dauw were named Big Ten Women's Diver and Swimmer of the Week, respectively, on Jan. 10, for their efforts in helping Michigan beat the Hoosiers. [ Release ]

Setting Records ... Against Florida and Stanford on Nov. 4, the Wolverines set two program long-course records on relays. The 200-meter freestyle relay, consisting of Alexa Mehesan, Caitlin Dauw, Deirdre Jones, and Claudia Lau finished third, but its time of 1:47.29 shattered the 16-year-old program record, previously held by former Wolverines Rachel Gustin, Alegra Breaux, Elizabeth Jackson and Anne Malley (set in 1995).

Also, Mehesan, Dauw, Angela Chokran, and Ashley Cohagen set a new program and Canham Natatorium record in the 200-meter medley relay (1:56.94), beating the field by more than a full second. They broke the former record held by Elizabeth Jackson, Rachel Gustin, Talor Bendel and Megan Gillam (1:59.25), which was also set in 1995. Gustin, Bendel and Gillam were NCAA Champions as part of Michigan's 400-yard medley relay team that season.

In addition, the Wolverines set 11 meet and facility records at the Hawkeye Invitational from Dec. 2-4. The meet was held at the Iowa Campus Recreation and Wellness center, the site for this year's Big Ten Championships.

Future Wolverines ... On Nov. 15, Michigan announced the signings of seven prep standouts to National Letters of Intent for the 2012-13 season. The signees include Ali DeLoof (Grosse Pointe, Mich./Grosse Pointe South), Marie Georger (Erie, Pa./Mercyhurst Prep), Zoe Mattingly (Zionsville, Ind../Zionsville), Sharalynn Missiuna (Oakville, Ontario/Oakville Trafalgar), Marni Oldershaw (Oakville, Ontario/Iroquois Ridge), Jessica Wolf (Waukesha, Wis./Muskego), and diver Emmy Orrico (Commerce Township, Mich./Mercy). [ Full Release ]

• Four of the six swimmers are ranked in inside the top 100 in CollegeSwimming.com's 2012 Recruiting Rankings, including Oldershaw (No. 34), Georger (No. 65), Wolf (No. 79), and Mattingly (No. 99). Additionally, DeLoof is No. 158 and Missiuna is No. 160.
• TheSwimmersCircle.com rated Michigan's recruiting haul as the tenth-best class in the nation through the early signing period. [ Rankings ]
• Both Georger and Oldershaw are rated as five-star recruits by SwimmingWorldMagazine.com.
• Jessica Wolf is the second-best distance swimmer in the country, trailing only Bonnie Brandon, the No. 1 overall recruit by CollegeSwimming.com, who signed with Arizona.

Fresh Faces ... Nine freshmen dot the roster this season: divers Emily Boyd (Monrovia, Calif./Flintridge Sacret Heart Academy), Carey Chen (Vancouver, British Columbia/University Hill Secondary), and Marina Nazario (Fort Lauderdale, Fla./St. Thomas Aquinas), and swimmers Kayla Douglas (Livonia, Mich./Franklin), Savannah Hatt (Livonia, Mich./Stevenson), Claudia Lau (Hong Kong, China/Diocesan Girls' School), Molly Schaefer (Orchard Lake, Mich./Marian), Michelle Stefandl (Princeton, N.J./Stuart Country Day School), and Alisa Zoltowski (West Lafayette, Ind./West Lafayette).

Oh Captain! ... Kristyne Cole, Amanda Lohman and Alexa Mehesan are the team captains for this season. Cole was also a captain of last year's team.

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Thu-Sat., March 8-10 -- at NCAA Zone C Diving Regionals (Bloomington, Ind.)

Contact: Brad Rudner (734) 763-4423