Iowa swimming in eighth place after day two of the Big Ten Championships

Multiple Hawkeyes entered the record book on the second day of competition.


Shivansh Ahuja

Swimmers dive off the starting blocks for the 800 medley relay during the first session of the 2020 Big Ten Women’s Swimming and Diving Championships at the HTRC on Wednesday, Feb. 19, 2020. (Shivansh Ahuja/The Daily Iowan)

Chris Werner, Sports Reporter

The Hawkeye women’s swimming and diving team has added new chapters to the school record books after the first two days of the Big Ten Championships.

Junior Kelsey Drake and freshman Millie Sansome highlighted Iowa’s second day of competition at the Campus Recreation and Wellness Center.

Drake swam to a time of 1:59.92 in the prelims of the 200-individual medley in the morning session. The time was a new personal record for Drake and the second fastest in the history of the women’s swimming and diving program.

Her ninth-place finish in the prelims qualified her for the ‘B’ final in the night portion of the meet.

Drake took advantage of her second try of the day as she improved by over half a second, swimming to a 1:59.41. in the finals. She only trails Emma Sougstad’s 2016 mark of 1:57.55.

“I felt like it was a really good swim,” Drake said. “I’ve been struggling with that event for quite a while now, kind of mentally, and I think this year just kind of letting loose and letting go of stressing about it really helped me to get out there and get a best time. I’m really happy with that. Then moving up in finals, too, there’s nothing else I could’ve asked for.”

Drake’s Thursday heroics come on the heels of her school-record 200-fly effort in a time trial following Wednesday’s official events.

She swam the 200-fly in 1:55.89, nearly two full seconds faster than the previous school-record which Drake set earlier this season.

“That was definitely a high point,” Drake said. “Dropping two seconds; that’s crazy. I knew I could do it but to see the time, it was unbelievable. I was definitely riding that high into today and for the rest of the weekend. It was a great start to the week.”

Drake wasn’t the only Hawkeye to etch her name into the record books on Thursday.

For the second straight night, Sansome was part of an all-time record for Iowa.

Not only was she part of the record setting 400-medley relay team, along with freshman Aleksandra Olesiak, Drake, and senior Hannah Burvill — who finished in 3:36.18 to take ninth place overall — but she set an individual record at the same time.

In the first leg of the relay, the backstroke, Sansome set the record for the 100-back. Her time of 53.21 bested her own school record, set just a few weeks ago at the Shamrock Invitational, by over two seconds.

“It was exciting,” Sansome said. “I knew that I was up against some really fast girls. Marc [Long] said before ‘I’m pretty sure one of them is going to break the NCAA record.’ I knew it was going to be tough competition, and I was trying to focus on what I’ve been working on, and it paid off so I’m really happy with it.”

Day two resulted in 76 more points for the Hawkeyes in the overall meet, leaving them in eighth place with 168 points heading into day three.

Friday’s action includes the prelims and finals of the 100-fly, 400-individual medley, 200-free, 100-breast, 100-back, and 3-meter diving events.

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