A young squad of Badger swimmers will be making their way to the northwest for this year’s NCAA Championships in Federal Way, Wash., this weekend.The men’s swimming team had five swimmers qualify for the championships that will be held today through Saturday at the Weyerhaeuser King County Aquatic Center. Not one of those five swimmers is a senior; rather, there are three juniors (Scott Rice, Mike Desautels and Kyle Sorensen), a sophomore (Phil Davies) and one freshman (Mitch Buenger) making up the competing Badgers.“Heading into the NCAAs, we are going to try and improve from our showing at last year’s meet,” Badger coach Eric Hansen said.The Badgers have some work to do in Washington. Wisconsin finished 4-3 overall in dual meets this season but went only 1-2 in Big Ten competition, scoring their only victory over Iowa. The last two dual meets of the season were losses to Minnesota and Purdue on the first two days of February.However, Wisconsin does bring some momentum to the NCAAs. In their last high-stakes competition at the Big Ten Championships, Wisconsin finished seventh, one place higher than last year.Moreover, Wisconsin was able to place over No. 16 Penn State with a very strong last day of competition. Scott Rice led the charge on the final day, winning his heat of the 200-yard butterfly, affording him seventh place. And at the end of the day, a relay consisting of Desautels, Sorensen, Davies and Buenger finished fourth in the 400-yard freestyle race.“With all the elite competition, it will be tough to score individually,” Hansen said.”We are going to place a large emphasis on our relays, as they score double points.”The Badgers do bring some tough competitors to Federal Way. Rice finished second twice in Wisconsin’s losing effort at Purdue and had a third place finish versus Minnesota the day after. He will compete in the 100- and 200-yard butterfly events at the NCAAs as well as the 200-yard individual medley. Hansen said that the Badgers would focus on the 200- and 400-yard freestyle relays, which would feature the Desautels, Sorensen, Davies and Buenger lineup. Sorensen will swim in the 50- and 100-yard freestyle races and compete with Rice in the 100-yard butterfly in addition to his role in Wisconsin’s relays.Davies is also slated to swim in freestyle races, competing with Sorensen in the 50- and 100-yard races. He will also be the only Badger lined up to compete in the 200-yard freestyle. The freshman Buenger is slated to be the anchor of the relays.“It’s kind of a shock,” Buenger said of participating as a freshman in the NCAA Championships with the Badgers.”I’m just trying to follow what the other guys do.”He also described the jump to the NCAAs from high school swimming as “the biggest there is.”Despite Wisconsin’s hopes to wrangle some success in the relays and through a few individual races, the heavy favorite for the National Championship seems to be the University of Texas. The Longhorns are looking to bring in their tenth championship in team history and look apt to do it after their 800-yard freestyle relay shattered American, U.S. Open, and NCAA records at the recent Big 12 Championships with a time of 6:10:55, breaking the old time by over three full seconds. The Longhorns also cruised to their 29th consecutive conference title and are the hot hand heading into the meet.Wisconsin swimmers have seen high levels of competition already in the season and should be ready for what is to come, though.“The Big Ten is a real deep conference,” Buenger said.”We may not have the powerhouses, but it’s real deep.”Wisconsin finished 29th last year in the NCAA and enters this year’s meet in roughly the same position.— UWBadgers.com contributed to this report.
Arteta. PHOTO ARSENAL FC Bournemouth 1 Arsenal 1Bournemouth, United Kingdom | AFP | Mikel Arteta wants Arsenal to match his high standards after the Spaniard’s first game in charge ended in a 1-1 draw at Bournemouth on Thursday.After a bright start from the visitors, the ills of Arsenal’s season that have seen Arteta handed his first senior managerial role were obvious when Dan Gosling put Bournemouth in front on the half hour mark.Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang once again rode to his side’s rescue to level, but the Gunners could not make the most of their dominance of the ball after the break against a Bournemouth side that had lost six of their last seven games.A point leaves Arsenal still down in 11th and with one win in their last 14 games in all competitions under three different managers.“There are no negotiables at this club, there are standards that have to be done at this club and they held them today,” said Arteta.“In terms of attitude, desire and commitment it was better than I expected.“I am still learning about the players, about the priorities to make them more secure when they jump on to the pitch.“My only aim now is to find solutions; to attack better, defend better.”Arteta recalled the experienced trio of Mesut Ozil, Alexandre Lacazette and Sokratis Papastathopoulos from the side that drew 0-0 at Everton as he watched on from the stands on Saturday.Ozil has faced a barrage of criticism this season due to his limited impact on the field, whilst Arsenal distanced themselves from his comments support for the Muslim minority Uighurs in Xinjiang amid a backlash from China.The German looked more like his old self in the opening quarter as the visitors dominated possession with Ozil pulling the strings. Twice he freed Lacazette inside the area, but the French international striker could not get a clean strike on goal.“I think he played really well,” added Arteta of Ozil’s impact. “He worked and could have been the difference, we could have scored three or four goals from his balls through.”Arsenal’s clean sheet at Goodison Park at the weekend was their first on the road in the Premier League since the opening day of the season and their defensive deficiencies soon reappeared.Gosling robbed the ball midway inside the Arsenal half and continued his run forward into the box to meet Jack Stacey’s low cross.Bernd Leno then prevented his side falling 2-0 behind before half-time with a smart save at his near post from Josh King.Arteta made an impact with his half-time team talk as Arsenal dominated in the second half but once again needed Aubameyang to dig them out of the trouble.The Arsenal captain scored his 14th goal of the season as he swept home a loose ball inside the Bournemouth box.Lacazette then had a glorious chance to give Arteta the perfect start when he raced clear on goal, but Bournemouth captain Steve Cook recovered just in time with a sliding challenge to divert the striker’s shot behind for a corner.At the other end, Callum Wilson thought he had given Bournemouth just their second ever victory over Arsenal when he tapped into an unguarded net after Leno parried Harry Wilson’s shot.However, the offside flag came to Arsenal’s rescue and a VAR review confirmed the England striker had strayed marginally beyond the last line of defence. Share on: WhatsApp read more