Hawkeyes Head to Big Ten Championships

Feb. 19, 2013

Complete Release

The University Iowa women’s swimming and diving team will compete at the Big Ten Championships, Wednesday through Saturday at the University Aquatic Center in Minneapolis.

The competition begins at 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 20, and then follows three days of non-stop action. Swimming finals will be held at 6:30 p.m. on all four days, while preliminaries will begin at 11 a.m. on Feb. 21-23. Diving preliminaries will begin at 1 p.m. on Feb. 21-23 and the finals will take place later each day.

All-session tickets are $40 for adults and $25 for students and youth. All seats are general admission. Tickets are on sale now at MyGopherSports.com or over the phone at 1-800-846-7437.

The Hawkeyes placed ninth overall with 201 points at the 2012 Big Ten Championships in Iowa City, Iowa.

Hawkeye Becky Stoughton was named the Big Ten Freshman Swimmer of the Year during the final session of the 2012 Big Ten Swimming and Diving Championships. Stoughton led the Hawkeyes with 44 individual points and recorded a total of four school records. She reset a school record in the 200 free (1:47.29) during the opening leg of the 800 free relay. She also posted school records in the 1,650 free (16.14.14), 400 IM (4:12.34), and the 500 free (4:40.82).

Stoughton, Emily Hovren, Hannah Maher and Daniela Cubelic posted a school record in the 800 freestyle relay. The squad swam a time of 7:20.29 to finish ninth with the second fastest time in school history.

The Hawkeye quartet of Cubelic, Karolina Wartalowicz, Abby Tuchscherer and Danielle Carty posted a time that makes the Iowa record books in the 400-medley relay during the final session of the championships. Cubelic led off the relay and broke a school record in the 100 back (53.63). The squad went on to post a time of 3:40.35 to break a school record and finish ninth overall.

Carty, Heather Arseth, Cubelic and Hovren set a school record in the 200-free relay (1:31.68) to finish seventh overall. Carty led off the relay with a collegiate best time of 23.17, which ranks second in school history.

Abbey Tushscherer was awarded the Sportsmanship Award for the Iowa team. The award is given to those who have demonstrated the ideals of sportsmanship, which are fairness, civility, honesty, unselfishness, respect and responsibility

The Big Ten Network will televise the Big Ten Women’s Swimming and Diving Big Ten Championships on Sunday, March 23 at 10:30 a.m. Minnesota will stream the entire championship for FREE at gophersports.com.

The Hawkeye women have crowned 13 Big Ten champions in the program’s 35-year history. Iowa’s highest finish at the Big Ten Championships came in 1986 when the team tied for second after crowning eight champions.

Nancy Vaccaro won Iowa’s first title in the 50 fly in 1983. Iowa’s last Big Ten champion was Melissa Loehndorf in the 200 fly in 2001.

Kelly Johnson was named Big Ten Diver of the Year in 1986, and former diving coach Bob Rydze was named Big Ten Diving Coach of the Year four times (1985, 1986, 1995, 2011).

Kerry Stewart (1983), Jennifer Skolaski (2005) and Nancilea Underwood (2006) are Iowa’s Big Ten Medal of Honor winners for women’s swimming and diving.

Since its first season in 1975, the Hawkeye women’s swimming and diving team has posted 113 NCAA qualifiers, 43 All-Americans and 16 Big Ten Champions. The Hawkeyes have a dual meet record of 206-168-2 in their 39-year history.

Marc Long is in his ninth season as head coach for the University of Iowa swimming team. It’s his eighth as head coach of the combined program. During his tenure as head coach of both programs, 54 school records have fallen and 93 Hawkeyes have provisionally qualified for the NCAA Championships.

Todd Waikel began his duties as the University of Iowa diving coach in July 2012. Waikel, who was the assistant diving coach at Indiana for seven seasons, replaced long time UI diving coach Bob Rydze. Waikel comes to Iowa City with an impressive collegiate and national diving resume. He helped the Hoosiers to five Big Ten Conference titles (four women’s, one men’s) and three top 10 NCAA finishes in his seven seasons. He also has coached 10 USA Diving National Teams to titles since 2006.

The University Aquatic Center has hosted nine Big Ten Championships, six NCAA Championships, and many national and international competitions. The facility that is estimated to be two acres in size, was built in 1990 and is located east of Cookie Hall on the Minneapolis campus. The Aquatic Center is home to the Dorothy L. Sheppard Pool. The 50-meter competition pool measures eight lanes wide and eight feet deep. The facility includes a diving well with one and three-meter boards, and 1, 5, 7.5, and 10-meter diving platforms. Seating includes 1,346 permanent seats and 1,200 temporary bleachers.

Juniors Abby Grilli and Lauren Kelba, and redshirt sophomore Joelle Christy will travel to Houston for the NCAA Zone D Diving meet on March 11-13.