The Gophers' Max McHugh, a junior from Sturgeon Bay, Wis., won his second title in the NCAA swimming and diving championships in Greensboro, N.C., when he took first place in the 200-yard breaststroke Saturday in 1 minutes, 49.02 seconds.
The Big Ten champion in that event earlier this month was the second seed after the morning preliminaries. He won the fifth heat easily in 1:50.88 — a season-best time for him. Then he was almost two seconds faster in the final to edge favored Reece Whitley of California (1:49.54).
They went nearly stroke for stroke the first 150 yards, with McHugh leading at 100 yards by six hundredths of a second and Whitney, a 6-9 junior, ahead at 150 by three hundredths of a second. But McHugh finished in 28.71 for the final 50 yards while Whitley closed in 29.26.
McHugh's title in the 100 breaststroke on Friday was the Gophers' first in swimming since 1964, when Walt Richardson won the 100 butterfly in 50.2 seconds.
"I'm really proud of Max, which is a huge understatement, obviously," Gophers coach Kelly Kremer said. "It's clearly hard to win at this level, and we haven't seen a Gopher men's swimmer win on this stage for so long, and he won two!"
U volleyball rolls
After losing the first set, the No. 4 Gophers volleyball won the next three, beating host Northwestern 19-25, 25-15, 25-15, 25-20.
Taylor Landfair had 14 kills and Stephanie Samedy 12 for Minnesota (13-2).
The Gophers continued to excel at blocking against the Wildcats (3-5). Regan Pittman had seven, Shea Rubright six and Samedy four. In their past five matches, the team has 64 blocks, nearly 13 per match.
U softball wins on HRs
Emily Hansen hit a three-run homer in each game as the Gophers swept host Illinois 5-1 and 9-5. Minnesota (12-3) has won nine in a row, including three against the Illini (10-5).
Megan Dray hit a solo homer for the Gophers in the opener and Amber Fiser got the win on a five-hitter, giving up only one run in the first inning. Hansen had a fourth RBI on a single.
In the second game, Minnesota was trailing 5-3 in the sixth when Hansen hit her three-run shot. Natalie DenHartog and Carlie Brandt had solo homers. And Hansen once again had four RBI, getting the last one when hit by a pitch with the bases loaded.
Hansen's eight-RBI day gives her a team-high 16 this season. MaKenna Partain scored three runs in the two games to boost her career total to 198 — a program record.
U baseball drops two
Nebraska rallied for five runs in the sixth to edge the visiting Gophers 6-4 in the first game of a doubleheader, and the Cornhuskers also won the second game, 17-5
In the opener, Ron Sweeney was 2-for-2, hitting two doubles, and had one RBI and one run scored for Minnesota, which led 4-1 before the Cornhuskers (9-4) had their big inning. Gophers starter Jack Liffrig went 5⅔ innings, giving up one earned run and four hits.
Nebraska (10-4) led 17-1 in the second game before Sweeney hit a grand slam for the Gophers (3-11) in the seventh inning.
• Gophers golfer Angus Flanagan closed with a 5-over 75 in the Goodwin at Stanford's golf course to tie for 24th with a 212 total. Minnesota also finished 24th (885) out of 28 teams.
• Kostas Zaltos won the men's hammer throw (212 feet, 7 inches) for the Gophers and Carissa Dock the women's 3,000-meter steeplechase (10 minutes, 47.30 seconds) at the Big Ten Indiana Invite #1. Devia Brown was second in the women's shot put (54-3¼) with the third-longest throw in program history.
• Gophers alums Sean Russell and Mitch McKee finished first at 57 kg and second at 65 kg, respectively, at the Last Chance Qualifier in Fort Worth, Texas, to advance to next weekend's U.S. Olympic wrestling trials in the same city. The pair join 2021 NCAA heavyweight champion Gable Steveson in the trials.