LARAMIE, Wyo. – In its final dual meet of 2016, the University of Wyoming men’s swimming and diving team will face Pac-12 member Utah on Saturday in Green River, Wyo. The dual is set to begin at 1 p.m. MT at the Green River High School Aquatic Center.
The men’s squad is coming off a third-place finish at the Mizzou Invite, where the Cowboys recorded a long list of season-best times and nine NCAA “B” Cut times. Junior Wade Nelson finished five races with his fastest marks of the season, each ranking in the top three in the Western Athletic Conference. He logged a 48.03 in the 100 backstroke and a 1:46.78 in the 200 backstroke, ranking second and third in the conference, respectively. Nelson also put up the second-best times in the WAC this season in the 200 butterfly (1:48.38) and in the 200 individual medley (1:48.21). His season-best time in the 400 individual medley of 3:49.43 was the fastest by any WAC swimmer this season by more than three seconds. Senior Gabe Rooker also hit season-best times in his last outing. Rooker clocked in at 53.84 in the 100 breaststroke, the best time in the WAC this season, and 1:57.45 in the 200 breaststroke, the conference’s second-best time.
Last season, the Cowboys upset the No. 14 ranked Utah squad in Green River, Wyo., by a score of 173-127. The Utes are currently receiving votes in the CSCAA’s Coaches Poll.
“It was a great meet last year, I feel like Utah enjoyed it as much as we did,” UW head coach Tom Johnson said. “They’re a very good team and I think we match up pretty well. The crowd was tremendous and I hope it will be the same this time. We have to win the relays and find a way to win the 200 freestyle. Their diving is outstanding which will be a good test for our divers. We match up well in the backstroke and the butterfly so we need to win those as well. It’s going to be a great meet and they’ll be ready for us on Saturday.”
Wyoming swimming and diving will first travel to Grand Junction, Colo., for the Colorado Mesa Invite set to begin today. Both the men’s and women’s squads will compete in the three-day meet prior to the men traveling to Green River for Saturday’s dual.