The meet didn’t come down to a second or even half a second.

Though the 29-point differential between the No. 10 Michigan women’s swimming and diving team and No. 5 Georgia may suggest otherwise, the meet was decided by the nine-hundredths of a second, according to Michigan coach Jim Richardson. Those nine-hundredths of a second determined the winner of the short-length events.

“We’re swimming head-to-head and winning as many races as them,” Richardson said. “.Those bang-bang races were pretty much the meet.”

Michigan (1-0 Big Ten, 1-2 overall) won seven of 13 individual events, but the relays made the difference, with the Wolverines taking home victory in just one of four races.

“We just came up a little short in the relays where we thought we could be there,” Richardson said. “The (three relay losses) were bang-bang finishes.”

But despite the team’s proximity to victory, Richardson said he wasn’t disappointed that Michigan failed to pull off the upset. He said that over the course of the meet, the Wolverines lost just one event in the pool, and the rest of the races could have gone either way.

Michigan’s inability to beat some of the nation’s best teams despite close meets is not first on Richardson’s mind.

“We had our best week of training so far this year during the week,” Richardson said. “I tend to judge our performance on the basis of how well we train during the week. Sometimes at the end of the week you have trained so well that you do not have a whole lot of gas left in the tank.”

He added that the team just needs to translate its training into competition.

Richardson said he was particularly impressed with senior Lindsey Smith’s times this weekend. Smith finished the 100-yard freestyle in 56.88 seconds, which beat her time from the national championships this summer. It was also her second-best personal time, She benefited from a “really, really good” 50-yard split (25.73) in the 200-meter freestyle relay and in the 200-yard medley relay (22.67). Smith also won the 200-yard freestyle (1:48.92).

Diver Elyse Lee and swimmers Justine Mueller, Margaret Kelly, and Emily Brunemann, all of whom put in extra training during the summer, swam well. Lee swept the diving events with two NCAA zone qualifying marks – a 272.70 in the one-meter and a 310.87 in the three-meter.

Mueller posted two NCAA consideration marks in the 200-meter breaststroke (2:37.24) and the 400-meter individual medley (4:57.42), in addition to winning the 200-yard individual medley (2:03.86).

Kelly finished the 100-yard butterfly in 55.03 seconds for a first-place finish. Brunemann won the 1,650-yard freestyle with a time of 16:30.81.

The Wolverines take on Ohio State and Princeton this weekend, hoping to bounce back from the tough loss to the Bulldogs.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *