The Michigan women’s swimming and diving team started the new year with a statement, more than doubling the scores of its six opponents combined at Copa Coqui in San Juan, Puerto Rico.

The Wolverines won the meet with an impressive 106.50 points, 93.50 points ahead of second-place team Navy. Michigan won eight of the ten events in the meet, and the Wolverines swept the top four spots in the 100-meter backstroke and 200-individual medley.

Instead of swimming in the usual 25-yard pool, Michigan swam in a 50-meter Olympic-size course pool. This makes times slower due to meters being longer than yards, and the lack of flip turns that come with 25-yard pools.

But Michigan coach Jim Richardson didn’t think the team was tripped up by the change.

“I thought we swam pretty well,” he said. “Our training has been very good to this point, and our times looked like they were faster than at this point last season.”

Senior Margaret Kelly was named MVP after setting two meet records in the 100-meter butterfly and 200-meter individual medley. Kelly was also a member of the winning 200-meter medley relay team.

“Margaret is above and away the most versatile swimmer on our team,” Richardson said. “If we need someone to swim and score some points, she can do it. At this point, we are trying to help her swim faster than she ever has.”

Amanda Lohman led the way for the Wolverines’ divers, placing second in the one-meter dive and first in the three-meter dive.

“Amanda had some sharp dives and scored some of her highest marks this season,” Michigan diving coach Chris Bergére said. “She has been training at a very high level and I expect her performances to continue as we get closer to Big Tens.”

Kelly was named Big Ten swimmer of the week, and Lohman was named Big Ten diver of the week due to their respective performances at the meet.

Many other Wolverines also got to taste victory. Junior Natasha Moodie won the 50-meter freestyle and was also a member of the winning 200-meter medley relay. Senior Leigh Cole won the 100-meter freestyle and freshman Mattie Kukors won the 100-meter backstroke.

The win was Michigan’s third consecutive non-dual meet victory at Copa Coqui. And with a tough Big Ten schedule coming up, Michigan will have to stay on its toes.

“We have to do two things,” Richardson said. “First, we have to stay healthy, above everything. And secondly, we need to continue to build upon our training regiments. If we can do those things, and incorporate a good rest cycle in there, we should be able to swim very well.”

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