TOPEKA, Kan. – Freshman Haley Molden placed first in the 200-yard freestyle to lead the Jayhawks, who sit in second place with 587.5 total points after day two of the Kansas Classic, Saturday evening at Capitol Federal Natatorium.
Molden, a Topeka, Kan. native, shaved nearly two seconds off her preliminary time to take the top finish in night final, with a time of 1.49.60. Molden also anchored Kansas’ top-finishing 800-yard freestyle relay team that finished with a time of 7:31.56, in the night’s final event.
“This is home turf for Haley,” head coach Clark Campbell said. “I know she was really excited. The 200 free is her signature event and that time was a big time swim for her, for where we are in the season.”
Freshman Chelsie Miller swam the 400-yard IM with a time of 4:21.47 to pick up a second place finish for the Jayhawks, while senior Morgan Sharp (200-yard freestyle, 1:51.48), freshman Bryce Hinde (100-yard breaststroke, 1:04.53) and sophomore Alina Vats (100-yard backstroke, 55.12) rounded out the top-three finishes on day two for Kansas (4-1, 1-0).
“We had another good morning session and tonight we were solid again,” Campbell said. “We weren’t crazy fast all the way around. We had some ups and downs, but that’s the way it goes in a finals meet and with the 800 freestyle at the end, I thought we ended the session well.”
Kansas goes into the final day of the championship trailing No. 21 Notre Dame (667.5) by 80 points. If the Jayhawks want to make a push to challenge the Fighting Irish on the final day, Campbell knows his team must get started early in the morning.
“The most important session of a six session, three-day meet is the third day morning,” Campbell said. “You have to come in with a lot of energy and enthusiasm, because the session is very short. We have to come in and be ready to perform at a high level. The twist with this meet is we are going to go an hour earlier than we have the other sessions, so we have to get fed, get to bed and come in tomorrow with a lot of energy.”
Heading into the third and final day of the Kansas Classic, Notre Dame and Kansas lead the field, which includes Nebraska (452), Iowa State (286), Rice (285) and Nebraska-Omaha (122).
The Jayhawks will be back in the pool Sunday morning for day three of the Kansas Classic, with preliminaries beginning at 9 a.m. and finals starting at 3 p.m. The order of events is as follows:
Preliminaries (9 a.m.)
15 minute break
Finals (3 p.m.)
1650-yard freestyle (fastest heat)
15 minute break
400-yard freestyle relay (All but fastest heat. Seeded fastest to slowest)