Nelson dominates for Badgers

University of Wisconsin senior Beata Nelson added to an already long list of accomplishments with a dominant performance in her final Big Ten Conference swimming and diving championships.

The 2016 Verona graduate won four titles and six total medals in Iowa City, Iowa, making her a nine-time Big Ten champion and first-team all-conference honoree.

Nelson won a gold medal each day of the four-day championships.

She joined fellow senior Megan Doty and sophomores Lillie Hosack and Alana Palmer in the first-place 800-yard freestyle relay on Wednesday, Feb. 19. The quartet’s NCAA qualifying time of 6:55.84 broke the previous school record of 6:57.54, set at last year’s Big Ten championships.

Nelson broke the Iowa pool record in the 200 individual medley by nearly three seconds in prelims, then won her second straight title in the event in the finals on Thursday, Feb. 20. Her NCAA qualifying time of 1:51.66 broke her own pool record and her own Big Ten record.

Nelson, Hosack, Palmer and junior Kelsi Artim also placed second in the 400 medley relay last Thursday with an NCAA qualifying time of 3:29.08.

Nelson finished the meet by winning the 100 and 200 backstroke titles for the third straight year. Her NCAA qualifying time of 49.85 seconds on Friday, Feb. 21, was just shy of the Big Ten and pool records, both broken by Nelson a day earlier in the 400 medley relay.

The championships wrapped up Saturday, Feb. 22, when Nelson won the 200 back with a pool-record time of 1:48.73. She also joined Doty, Hosack and Palmer in the third-place 400 free relay (3:13.21).

The Badgers finished fifth in the team standings with 734 points. Ohio State won its first Big Ten title in 34 years with 1,503.5 points.