Cowgirl Swimming and Diving Beats Air Force to Finish Third in the MWC

Feb. 3, 2007


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The Cowgirl swimming and diving team beat Air Force 137-92 on Saturday afternoon to secure sole possession of third place in the final Mountain West Conference standings, at Cadet Natatorium in Colorado Springs, Colo. The Cowboys fell to the Falcons 142-101.

With today's win, the Cowgirls improve to 8-2 overall and 6-2 in the MWC while the Cowboys fall to 2-5 overall and 0-5 in the conference. The Cowgirls third place regular season finish is the best by the UW women since the MWC began tracking regular season dual standings. Air Force's men improve to 13-3 overall and 3-2 in the MWC and their women fall to 4-8 overall and 0-8 in conference.

"This was a tale of two meets," said UW head coach Tom Johnson. "Our women got a nice win and secured a third place finish in the conference, but our men had a tough day."

The Cowgirls won nine of 13 events on the day including two each from senior Lauren Beard and sophomore Aimee Stinson. In her last college dual meet, Beard had a great day and won both the 200 IM (2:14.36) and the 200 backstroke (2:14.54). Stinson swam to first place finishes in the 200 freestyle (1:54.10) and the 500 freestyle (5:09.15). Other first place finishes for the Cowgirls came from senior Heidi Thorson in the 50 freestyle (24.97), freshman Shauna Nelson in the 200 butterfly (2:13.89), junior Brittany Wainwright in 3-meter diving (284.55) and senior Saara Haapanen in the 1-meter event (272.10).

The Cowgirls also won the 400 freestyle relay with Thorson, seniors Katie Bigger and Tamara Lehnertz and junior Angela DeWolf turning in a time of 3:36.59.

The Cowboys had a tougher day and took just four events from a tough Air Force squad. Senior divers John Lynch and Kevin Bretting each won an event with Bretting winning the 1-meter (322.20) and Lynch taking top honors in the 3-meter (332.05). Senior Ron Fogel closed out a great dual meet career with a first place finish in the 200 butterfly (1:53.11) and sophomore Alex Larkin won the 200 breaststroke (2:08.68).

The Wyoming divers wrapped up a very successful weekend at the Air Force Diving Invite as well on Saturday. Wainwright won the 3-meter event with her score of 284.55 and senior Emily Keefer finished close behind in second with a score of 282.35. Bretting's score of 322.20 was good for second place in the men's 1-meter event. In platform diving, Lynch finished second on the men's side (309.05) and Keefer finished fourth in the women's event (189.00).

"Our divers were great as usual today," said Johnson. "We won all four boards in the dual meets and had some great invite performances over the weekend."

The UW swimming and diving team will now have 17 days to prepare for the biggest meet of the season, the 2007 MWC Championships. The championships will be held in Oklahoma City, Okla. and will run Feb. 21-24.

"Everyone's slate is now clean as we head into the conference championships," added Johnson. "What happened in dual meets doesn't count now and we have to get ready for the big dance."