On another warm day at the Nordic world ski championships, Jessie Diggins wore a uniform more suited for summer training than for winter racing. The Afton native tried to stay cool in shorts and short sleeves Tuesday, but she just missed the medals with a finishing fourth in the 10-kilometer freestyle.
Temperatures in Oberstdorf, Germany, reached 58 degrees at race time and felt even toastier under a bright sun. Norway's Therese Johaug won in 23 minutes, 9.8 seconds, with Sweden's Frida Karlsson and Ebba Andersson finishing second and third. Diggins' time of 24:21.8 was 5.1 seconds behind Andersson.
The finish was Diggins' best thus far at these world championships, and she was the fastest of four U.S. women to race in the 10K. But the heat has been a significant obstacle for her. Tuesday, race organizers had to salt the course to keep the snow firm.
"I went out there and just skied hard. And I'm so proud of that, because it is the only thing you can control. I kept pushing, even when I felt like I was going to fold in half and pass out,'' Diggins told US Ski & Snowboard, "I'm more of a Minnesota winter athlete."
Diggins' next race is expected to be Thursday's 4x5K team relay.
U-Michigan times set
The Gophers men's hockey team announced starting times and TV details for this weekend's series against Michigan. Friday's game is at 7 p.m. on FSN Plus and will have Charlie Beattie and Lou Nanne on the call. Saturday's game is at 4 p.m. on BTN.
• Gophers forward Grace Zumwinkle and Minnesota Duluth goalie Emma Soderberg were named WCHA forward and goalie of the month, respectively, for February. Wisconsin's Grace Bowlby of Edina was named defenseman of the month.
• Former Minnesota Duluth coach Mike Sertich was given the Legend of College Hockey award by the Hobey Baker Memorial Award Foundation. Sertich, a former UMD player, led the Bulldogs to three WCHA regular-season titles, and a pair of two league playoff titles. His 1984 team reached the NCAA title game, falling to Bowling Green in four overtimes. A year later, the Bulldogs advanced to the Frozen Four, falling to Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in three overtimes in the semifinals.
The Virginia, Minn., native compiled a 350-328-44 record in 18 seasons at Minnesota Duluth, producing three Hobey Baker Award winners, 11 NCAA All-Americas, five WCHA Player of the Year honorees and 21 future National Hockey League players. He spent three seasons as coach at Michigan Tech, going 25-69-9.
Steveson seeded No. 1
The Big Ten announced its pre-seeds for the conference wrestling championships, which will be held Saturday and Sunday in State College, Pa.
Gophers heavyweight Gable Steveson, the defending champion, is seeded No. 1. Minnesota's other seeds: No. 3 — Brayton Lee, 157 pounds; No. 4 — Patrick McKee, 125; Owen Webster, 184; No. 5 — Andrew Sparks, 165; No. 6 — Marcos Polanco, 141; Michael Blockhus, 149; No. 7 — Boo Dryden, 133; No. 9 — Jake Allar, 174; and No. 11 — Garrett Joles, 197.
Regan Smith update
Regan Smith will return to the Pro Swim Series this week, competing on the circuit for the second time this year. This time, the world champion from Lakeville will be surrounded by some additional star power.
About 20 Olympians, including gold medalists Katie Ledecky, Simone Manuel and Caeleb Dressel, will make their Pro Swim Series season debuts Wednesday through Saturday in San Antonio. Smith is entered in five events: the 100- and 200-meter backstroke, the 100 and 200 butterfly and the 100 freestyle. She is the world record holder and top seed in the 100 and 200 backstrokes
Smith won both butterfly events and the 100 backstroke at the January Pro Swim Series meet in San Antonio. Since then, she has gotten more training hours in long-course pools and is expected to improve upon her times.
The Pro Swim Series is a primary training ground for the Olympic trials in June and the Tokyo Olympics in July.
Six individuals, one relay
advance in track for U
Four Gophers women who won individual titles at last week's Big Ten Indoor Track and Field Championships as well as the winning 4x400-meter relay received invitations Tuesday to compete in the NCAA Indoor Championships. That event will be held March 11-13 in Fayetteville, Ark. Two athletes on Minnesota men's teams advanced, too.
Going to Arkansas off the Gopher' Big Ten championship team are sprinter Amira Young in the 60 and 200 meters, Bethany Hasz in the 5,000 (she actully won the 3,000 in the conference meet), Allison Gerads in the pentathlon and Tess Keyzers in the weight throw. Of those, Gerads is the highest seed, ninth.
Hasz is running in the 5,000, which is on a Friday while the 3,000 is Saturday, to have one extra day of rest before she competes in the NCAA Cross Country Championships in Stillwater, Okla., three days later on March 15.
Six runners are listed as candidates for the 4x400 relay: Jayla Campbell, Janielle Josephs, Val Larson, Abigail Schaffe, and Amira and Kayla Young.
Those on the Gophers' men's team advancing are Kaleb Siekmeier in the weight throw and Alec Basten in the 5,000.
• Gophers junior Max McHugh swam the fastest 50-yard breaststroke split ever (22.40 seconds) on the first day of the Big Ten swimming and diving championships in Columbus, Ohio. Despite his time, the Gophers finished eighth in the 200 medley relay (1:25.40) and are in seventh place as a team (164 points).
• Gophers gymnast Shane Wiskus was named the specialist of the week by the College Gymnastics Association following his performance at the 2021 Winter Cup in Indianapolis last weekend. Wiskus won the floor exercise title.
• Gophers senior Angus Flanagan after appearing in the Genesis Invitational has risen to No. 35 in the World Amateur Golf Rankings.
• Bella Williams and Isaiah Carver-Bagley of Bethel were named to the D3hoops.com teams of the week. Williams had 11 steals in one win last week, 10 assists in another. Carver-Bagley averaged 19.5 points per game in two men's wins by the Royals. … Bethany Lutheran's Hanna Geistfeld also made the women's team of the week by averaging 33 points and 10 rebounds per game in two wins.
• Bemidji State beat visiting Lake Superior State 2-1 in WCHA men's hockey on Tyler Kirkup's goal at 1:10 of overtime.