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Freshman Erin Downey competes in the 100 yard breaststroke. Kansas won the dual against Nebraska 192-103 on Saturday, Nov. 9.

Kansas swim and dive recently competed in its fifth and sixth Virtual Cup meets at Robinson Natatorium. 

In Kansas’ fifth virtual meet, the Jayhawks competed in a 400-yard medley relay, 500-yard freestyle, 200-yard individual medley, and 100-yard races for every stroke on Nov. 13.

Senior Dannie Dilsaver took advantage of the opportunity and won two of her four races. Dilsaver, known on the team as an individual medley specialist, showed out with a winning time of 2:06.12 in the 200-yard IM. This is perfect timing for her to be in her best shape as the end of the season meets are nearing.

Other highlights include a closely contested 100-yard butterfly that ended with junior Dewi Blose coming out on top with a time of 56.33 seconds. Senior captain Manon Manning finished .04 seconds behind, with a time of 56.37 seconds.

Manning got her revenge against Blose in the 100-yard backstroke, as Manning won the race with a time of 54.87 seconds. Blose finished second in 55.45 seconds, beating third place by almost four seconds.

Blose rounded out the meet with her second win, this time in the 100-yard freestyle with a winning time of 51.21 seconds. This time sets a new season best in the event, beating her former time of 51.42 seconds.

In the sixth and final Virtual Cup meet, the team swam in more distance-focused events. The swimmers competed in a 200-yard medley relay, 1650-yard freestyle, 50-yard freestyle, and a 200-yard race for every stroke last Friday.  

The 200-yard races in particular got very competitive, with two Jayhawks finishing less than a second apart in the 200-yard butterfly and 200-yard freestyle. Senior Ellie Flanagan (2:04.25) narrowly beat junior Paige Riekhof (2:04.48) in the 200-yard butterfly, while junior Claire Campbell (1:51.31) edged out freshman Ellie Wehrmann (1:51.56) in the 200-yard freestyle. 

In the 200-yard freestyle, Campbell came out extremely fast in her first 100 yards — almost a second ahead of Wehrmann at the halfway point.

After tying in their third 50 yards of the race with a split of 28.34, the freshman knew that she had a chance to win, but the initial lead Campbell built proved to be too much to conquer. After this tightly contested race, they are making out to be an exciting duo to watch in the final Virtual Invite in December.

Manning (1:57.75) won the 200-yard backstroke and junior Katie Steward (2:12.28) won the 200-yard breaststroke. Both these times set new pool records for Robinson Natatorium.   

In the 1,650-yard freestyle, freshman Kara Church had a strong showing with a winning time of 17:05.57. Church edged out senior Crissie Blomquist, who finished with a time of 17:09.26.

Overall, both meets proved Kansas is in midseason form. Freshmen like Wehrmann provide some promising potential for the Jayhawks.

Kansas will next compete in a Virtual Invite at Robinson Natatorium Dec. 16-18. 

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