Feb. 28, 2013
AUSTIN, Texas - TCU earned three fourth place individual performances and knocked off another three school record at day two at the Big 12 Championships at the Texas Swimming Center. Both the men and women are locked into tight battles for second as the men are in third with 204 points, 49 behind West Virginia, and the women have 181 points, 36 behind WVU for second.
"We built up some real momentum tonight," TCU head coach Richard Sybesma said. "It was unfortunate our men's 400 medley relay got disqualified, but our kids really rose to the occasion tonight. I am pleased with the individual performances that led to our team effort."
Ali Bleasdell crushed TCU's school record in the 200 IM during the final of the women's 200 IM, finishing fourth in 2:01.04. The time knocked off Victoria Thicke-Rattray's record by over a second and was an NCAA `B' cut.
"Ali has done a very good job," Sybesma noted. "She is a focused swimmer and trains well. Her technique has gotten much better in her IM."
Cooper Robinson had an interesting path to his fourth place effort in the men's 200 IM. Robinson thought he had missed out on the `A' final by less than a tenth of a second. However, a scratch came through and the sophomore found out he was in the `A' final as the team departed for the pool for finals. Robinson was strong on the outside with his 1:49.23. Mitch Adshead finished right behind him in fifth with a 1:49.75.
"To have so many good performances in the IM is good for our program," Sybesma said. "It was a big breakthrough for him as well as leading off the medley relay."
In the women's 50 free Sabine Rasch took fourth in 22.65. Rasch also swam 22.68 in the prelims, making it six times this season the senior has gone under the NCAA `B' cut in the event. However, the surprise came from the outside lane and Parris Schoppa. The senior became the second Frog in TCU history to go under 23 seconds in the sprint with her fifth place finish in 22.89. She also earned an NCAA `B' cut.
"Parris was due," Sybesma said. "She had a really good day and with her and Sabine finishing fourth and fifth that is really good for our championships."
The quartet of Ali Polhill, Gabi Korac, Bleasdell and Rasch took down the school record in the 400 medley relay during their fifth place effort in 3:44.99. Rasch has been a member of the top three 400 medley relay quartets in TCU history. During the exhibition heats of the 400 medley, Ashley Alspaugh took down her own school record in the 100 back with a lead off of 55.37.
The Frogs got two into the women's 500 free `A' final with Sara Brzozowski finishing sixth in 4:50.81 and Mikayla Winkler taking seventh in 4:52.29.
Two men made it up to the `A' final in the men's 500 free with Michael Franz taking sixth in 4:28.82 and Thor Stenfjord eighth in 4:30.03.
The women made their debut in the diving well with the 1-meter competition. TCU's only scoring diver was Lauren Mikulecky, who took 12th with a score of 222.90.
Competition resumes tomorrow with the busiest day of the Championships. Prelims start at 10 a.m. featuring the 400 IM, 100 fly, 200 free, 100 breast and 100 back. Men's 3-meter diving prelims will start at 11:30 a.m. and finals will be at 5 p.m. Women's 3-meter prelims take place at 2:35 p.m. with finals going on during the swimming finals starting at 6 p.m. The 200 free relay will be swam during finals.