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Minnesota Sports; Gophers Weekend Previews

A Pair of Big Ten Championship Meets highlight the weekend

Matt Krohn—

It’s another busy weekend for the Minnesota Gophers sports teams as the winter season start their close and the spring seasons continue to get going in full gear. The Gophers athletes will compete in a pair of Big Ten Championships this weekend with the postseason right around the corner for several additional teams. Here is a quick look at this weekends schedule of events.

Men’s Swimming @ Big Ten Championships—Ann Arbor, MI

The Gopher men’s swimming and diving teams get their chance this weekend at the Big Ten Championships after the women finished in 5th place last weekend. Evens started on Wednesday and through Thursday’s action Minnesota sits in 5th place. Minnesota’s Thursday events were highlighted by sophomore Bar Soloveychik finishing in second place in the 500 freestyle in a career best time of 4:14:45. On Wednesday night the Gophers 200 medley relay team of junior Casey Stowe, fifth-year senior captain Max McHugh, senior Shane Rozeboom and redshirt junior Lucas Farrar broke the school record with a time of 1:24.21. Unfortunately this was just good enough for 6th place in the race.

Action continues Friday with the 100 fly, 400 IM, 200 free, 100 breast, 100 back and 3-meter diving, and the 200 free relay while Saturday concludes with the 1,650-yard Freestyle, 200-yard Backstroke, 100-yard Freestyle, 200-yard Breaststroke, 200-yard Butterfly, Platform Diving, and the 400-yard Freestyle Relay. Finals begin at 4:30 each day and stream live on BTN+.

Indoor Track @ Big Ten Championships—Geneva, Ohio

The Minnesota Gophers indoor track and field team will be looking for their third consecutive Big Ten Championships this weekend at the SPIRE Institute in Geneva, Ohio. It will be significantly tougher this season after losing several stars to graduation, but Minnesota beings in several athletes with a good chance of bringing home some hardware.

Headlining the list is the Gopher trio of sprinters in the 60 meter dash. Amira Young set the school record earlier this season and has the best time in the conference this season at 7.19 seconds. Her teammate Akilah Lewis is right behind with the second fastest time at 7.21 seconds. Odell Frye has the 6th fastest time with 7.31 seconds. The Gophers could easily have all three on the podium by the end of the event.

Young also has the fastest time in the conference in the 200 meters this season at a time of 23.53 and will look to try and pull off a double win.

Minnesota returns three legs out of four of back to back Big Ten Champions in the 4x400 relay. Abigail Schaaffe, Janielle Josephs, and Jayla Campbell come back to look for the three-peat with the addition of Dyandra Gray. They currently have the fourth best time in the conference this season.

Nyalaam Jok will be near the top in the high jump. Her high this season of 1.86 meters is just one centimeter off the Big Ten’s best height.

Shelby Frank brings in the best weight throw in the conference this season with a throw of 23.97 meters which puts her in the top five in the NCAA this season.

If the Gophers can get top performances from all their athletes, a third title is in reach. Action begins at Noon on Friday and continues beginning at 12:30 on Saturday streaming live on BTN+.

Baseball vs St. Louis @ Fort Myers, Florida

The Gopher baseball team heads to the Minnesota Twins Spring Training Complex this weekend for a three game series against the St. Louis Billikens. One team will need to get their first win on the season as Minnesota opened 0-4 down in Arizona last week and St. Louis comes in at 0-3. The two teams have never met previously to this weekend.

Minnesota will start LHP Tucker Novotny on Friday, RHP Sam Malec on Saturday and RHP George Klassen on Sunday. Game time is Noon on Friday and Sunday and 10 M Saturday. No stream is available.

Softball @ Baylor Invitational—Waco, Texas

The Gopher softball team returns to action in the Lone Star State this weekend after a disappointing weekend at the Big Ten/ACC Challenge last weekend. Minnesota went just 1-3 last weekend needing an extra innings win over Viridian in their final game on Sunday to get in the win column. Minnesota’s offense sputtered going scoreless in their first two losses before their pitching faltered in a 10-5 loss to UNC Saturday afternoon.

This weekend the Gophers will play five games in Waco against three opponents. Minnesota is guaranteed one game each against Texas A&M Commerce, #22/25 Baylor and in #21/23 Maryland. The game against the Terrapins will be non-conference. Minnesota’s other two games will depend on the results from the first three. Action begins at 4:00 Friday against TAMC, with a game against the host Bears at 6:30 that will stream live on ESPN+. Minnesota will face Maryland at 10 AM Saturday morning before beginning the semifinals at either 3 or 5:30 with the third place and championships games slated for 9 or 11 AM Sunday. All potential games against Baylor will stream on ESPN+.

Gymnastics @ Big 5 Meet—Lincoln, Nebraska

The Minnesota Gophers gymnastics team is back in action at the annual Big 5 Meet held this season in Lincoln, Nebraska. Minnesota will compete in the second session along with Michigan State, Rutgers, Ohio State and Nebraska an Noon on Saturday.

Minnesota defeated Maryland their last time out last Sunday with junior Gianna Gerdes earning Big Ten Co-Gymnast of the Week honors after she recorded a career-high score of 9.950 on floor and tied her career high on vault by scoring 9.875.

Headed into the weekend Minnesota is ranked #18 in the RoadToNationals rankings. The Gophers rank #7 on vault, #17 on bars, #40 on beam and #9 on floor.

Minnesota should received the most competition from Ohio State who ranks #13 in the nation and Michigan State who ranks #19. The meet will air live on Big Ten Network at Noon Saturday.

Tennis vs Utah and Memphis—Baseline Tennis Center

The Gopher tennis team will host a pair of non-conference matches at home this weekend. Minnesota plays Utah Friday at 3PM and Memphis at 10AM Sunday.

Minnesota will look to bounce back from a pair of losses last weekend against Washington State and Nebraska. Minnesota is hampered by injuries and a lack of available players. The Gophers only have five healthy bodies, so they have been forced to forfeit the 5th and 6th singles matches all season long. Utah is 7-2 overall and is coming off a 5-2 win against Indiana last weekend. Memphis is 1-8 overall, with its most recent match being a 5-2 loss to Louisville on Feb. 19.

Tickets are free to both matches.

Men’s Basketball @ Nebraska

The Gophers continue their road swing with a trip to Lincoln for a 2:30 Saturday afternoon tip. The game will air on Big Ten Network. Full preview is HERE:

Women’s Basketball vs Purdue

The Gopher women’s basketball team finishes the Big Ten regular season with a home game against Purdue at 2 PM Sunday. Minnesota sits at 3-14 in the conference and in 13th place in the standings. They will open the Big Ten Tournament Wednesday afternoon at the Target Center in the 11/14 or 12/13 game against one of Rutgers, Wisconsin, Penn State or Northwestern. Sunday’s game will stream on BTN+. Minnesota will honor their trio of 5th year seniors in Isabelle Gradwell, Mi’Cole Cayton and Angelina Hammond postgame.

Women’s Golf @ Westbrook Invitational—Phoenix, Arizona

The Gopher women’s gold team will participate in the Westbrook Invitational hosted by Wisconsin this weekend at the Westbrook Village Golf Club. Round one will begin Sunday, Feb. 26, with a 9:30 AM shotgun start followed immediately by round two. The final round starts on Monday at 9:30 AM Live scoring is available HERE.

Women’s Hockey vs St. Thomas—WCHA First Round

Preview is here. Games set for 6 PM Friday, 2 PM Saturday and 2 PM Sunday if necessary on BTN+.

Men’s Hockey vs Ohio State

The Gophers complete the regular season against Ohio State at 3M Arena at Mariucci. Faceoff is at 8 Pm Friday on ESPNU, and 4:30 PN Saturday on Big Ten Network. Full preview is HERE.