Jan. 31, 2004
Laramie, Wyo. - The University of Wyomingmen's and women's swimming and diving teams defeated Air Force tocomplete the Mountain West Conference dual portion of their schedule,Saturday afternoon at Corbett Pool. The Cowboys edged the Falcons123-120 while the women won 140.5-101.5.
The Cowboys (5-5, 1-3 MWC), swam to first place finishes in seven of13 events with two wins coming from Gene Birks. Birks won both the 50freestyle and 100 freestyle in respective times of 21.42 and 46.64.
The 400 medley relay team of Ethan Maclean, Scott Usher, Birks andBryce Perica started the meet with a bang with a first place finish of3:24.57. Ron Fogel won the 200 butterfly in a time of 1:51.90 andUsher took the 200 breaststroke in a time of 2:05.51.
The diving team had a great showing at the Air Force Diving Inviteand led the Cowboys to today's dual win, with wins on both the1-meter and 3-meter boards. Last night, Adam Miller won the 3-meterevent with a score of 497.70. The Cowboys took the top-two spots onthe 1-meter board today, however final scores were not available atpress time"I am just so happy for our guys," said UW head coach TomJohnson. "This has been a tough stretch, we haven't won a meetsince November and now we beat the team that got second at conferencelast year, I couldn't be happier."Our men really showed up in the 200 back. Going 2-3-4, was a bigpart of our win. Gene (Birks) was a stud as usual, Scott (Usher) wasbig in the breaststroke and our divers really came through for us. Iam very pleased with their performances.
"Hopefully this gives us confidence heading into the Mountain WestChampionships. I think any one of four teams can be second and anyone of those teams can be fifth, whoever shows up for four days isgoing to be there."
The Cowgirls (3-8, 2-5 MWC), also won seven of 13 events on the day.The first Cowgirl win came in the 200 freestyle when Tamara Lehnertzswam a first place time of 1:57.21. Lauren Beard led the Cowgirlswith two event victories. Her first win came in the 200 IM (2:12.84)and her second in the 200 backstroke (1:54.90). Alex Leziy-Millerpicked up a first place finish in the 200 breaststroke with her timeof 2:26.98.
The Cowgirls closed the door on the dual with a 400 freestyle relaywin, in the final event of the day. Katie Haywood, Heidi Thorson,Katie Bigger and Lehnertz swam a first place time of 3:34.29.
The Cowgirl divers also had a good showing at the Air Force DivingInvite with win's over Air Force on both the 1-meter and 3-meterboards. Last night, Saara Haapanen won the 3-meter event with a scoreof 462.10. Today, the Cowgirls took the top three spots from theFalcons, however no scores were available."I am very proud of our girls," said Johnson. "It is nice tobe on the positive end of the meet. Our divers came through big timefor us again."Air Force raced really hard, they gave us a great meet but theyalways do. It is a great rivalry."
The Diving team will return to action next weekend to compete in theFalcon Cup at the Air Force Academy. The swimmers will begin trainingfor the upcoming Mountain West Conference Swimming and DivingChampionships that will be held Feb. 18-21 in Oklahoma City, Okla.