Hawkeye men’s swimming kicks off Big Tens

Iowa men's swimming and diving saw its first day of action in the Big Ten Championships.

Iowa%27s+Mateusz+Arndt+jumps+off+the+starting+block+during+the+first+day+of+the+2019+Big+Ten+Men%27s+Swimming+and+Diving+Championships+at+the+CRWC+on+Wednesday%2C+February+27%2C+2019.
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Hawkeye men’s swimming kicks off Big Tens

Iowa's Mateusz Arndt jumps off the starting block during the first day of the 2019 Big Ten Men's Swimming and Diving Championships at the CRWC on Wednesday, February 27, 2019.

Iowa's Mateusz Arndt jumps off the starting block during the first day of the 2019 Big Ten Men's Swimming and Diving Championships at the CRWC on Wednesday, February 27, 2019.

Shivansh Ahuja

Iowa's Mateusz Arndt jumps off the starting block during the first day of the 2019 Big Ten Men's Swimming and Diving Championships at the CRWC on Wednesday, February 27, 2019.

Shivansh Ahuja

Shivansh Ahuja

Iowa's Mateusz Arndt jumps off the starting block during the first day of the 2019 Big Ten Men's Swimming and Diving Championships at the CRWC on Wednesday, February 27, 2019.

Tanner DesPlanque, Sports Reporter

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Iowa men’s swimming and diving started its championship season, concluding Day 1 of the 2019 Big Ten Championships hosted in Iowa City.

There were only two events that competed on the first day of competition: the 200-medley relay and the 800-free relay. The Hawkeyes may not have gotten the results they wanted, but they swam some fast times.

The first event of the night was the 200-medley relay. Swimming the relay for Iowa were redshirt senior Kenneth Mende, sophomore Daniel Swanepoel, senior Michal Brzus, and junior Joe Myhre. Entering the championship, the Hawkeye team was ranked eighth in the Big Ten with a time of 1:27.89.

The Iowa men swam to a ninth-place finish with a time of 1:26.23, which kept them just outside of the podium. That would also be the fourth-fastest 200-medly relay time in school history.

Another accomplishment during the medley happened when anchor Myhre swam a personal best in his leg with a time of 18.86. This was the first time the junior has swam sub-nineteen from this distance.

“When I touched the wall, I’m thinking 19.1 or 19.0 just felt kind of weird,” Myhre said. “I really surprised myself with that split. I know there is always some room for improvement, and in the meet tomorrow hopefully get the second swim in the ‘A’ final. It’s really cool to build some confidence.”

The other event of the evening was the 800-free relay, and the Hawkeye men swam to better results in this one. The team for this event consisted of redshirt freshman Aleksey Tarasenko, freshmen Mateusz Arndt and Jackson Allmon, and junior Michael Tenney. Iowa was ranked at No.5 in this event, coming in with a seeding time of 6:30.40.

The Hawkeye men cut seven seconds off their time to finish the race in sixth with a time of 6:23.07. That time was good enough to claim the school record in this event, beating the old record by over a whole second.

“It feels pretty great,” Tenney said. “It was just so exciting and so much fun to be here in the environment that was going on. I mean it was unfortunate that we couldn’t get out those few teams, but we all tried really hard. We all went really fast, so it’s a good start to the meet I think. To be able to move forward from this and hopefully just keep getting faster.”

Another feature during this race was lead-off swimmer Tarasenko’s time of 1:35.62, which now ranks fourth all-time in school history.

After Day 1 of the men’s Big Ten Championship, the Iowa men are currently sitting at the No. 9 spot in points, with 88.

Hoping to keep the momentum going, the Hawkeye men return to action at the Campus Recreation and Wellness Center for Day 2. They will compete in both prelims and finals that will take place at 11 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. The events competing on Day 2 are the 500-free, 200-IM, 50-free, 1-meter diving, and the 400-medley relay.