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By Andy Ross, Big Ten Beat Writer
The Michigan Wolverines left no doubt in the pool that they are the ones to beat at the Men’s Big Ten meet this year. They got the Big Ten Championships started with two relay wins and two Boilermaker Aquatic Center pool records on Wednesday night in West Lafayette.
They started off with a win in the 200 medley relay at 1:24.12. Jason Chen (21.34), Chris Klein (23.56), Jeremy Raisky (20.22) and Paul Powers (19.00) won the relay ahead of Indiana (1:24.63) and Ohio State (1:25.37). That team broke the pool record that was held by Minnesota from the 2009 Big Ten Championships. Other notable splits that came from that relay were Matt McHugh’s (Ohio State) backstroke split of 21.24, Tanner Kurz’s (Indiana) breaststroke split of 23.27) and Ali Khalafalla’s (Indiana) freestyle split of 18.80. Michigan has not lost the 200 medley relay at the Big Ten meet since 2009.
Michigan was trailing to Indiana for 650 yards, but Dylan Bosch was able to swim away from Max Irwin over the anchor leg. Michigan has not lost the 800 free relay at the Big Ten meet since 2000. Anders Nielsen (1:32.36), Mokhtar Al-Yamani (1:35.63), Jack Mangan (1:33.64) and Bosch (1:33.41) won the relay at 6:15.04. That time broke another pool record that was set by Michigan in the 2009 Big Ten meet. Indiana was second at 6:16.28 with impressive splits from Blake Pieroni (1:32.71) and Anze Tavcar (1:33.59) on the first two legs. Wisconsin was third at 6:18.27 with a fast anchor split by Brett Pinfold at 1:32.85. Fans got a good glimpse of what the Nielsen-Pieroni matchup will look like in the individual 200 free on Friday night. It got a little more interesting with the addition of Wisconsin’s Pinfold, but it is expected to come between Nielsen and Pieroni.
Michigan leads the team standings with 128 points, Indiana is second with 112 and Ohio State is third with 106. Prelims for tomorrow will begin at 11 a.m. EST.
Ohio State, 106
Penn State, 84
Michigan State, 74