Wyoming Swimming and Diving Opens Season with Pentathlon

Oct. 7, 2006


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The Cowgirl swimming team opened the 2006-07 season in the exact same way it has opened the last three, with Heidi Thorson winning the Wyoming Pentathlon, Saturday morning at Corbett Pool.

"The kids have been dying to race each other so it was a lot of fun to finally swim in a racing environment," said veteran UW swimming coach Tom Johnson. "This meet does a great job of showing us where we are as a team. I saw a lot of things that were nice surprises but I also saw some places where we need to improve."

Thorson, a senior from Rozet, Wyo., won her fourth consecutive pentathlon to finish her career unbeaten in the annual preseason meet. Thorson swam a pentathlon record time of 5:07.42, eclipsing her old record of 5:09.97 which she swam last season. Thorson won three of the five events, the 100 freestyle, 100 butterfly and 100 IM, on her way to the overall pentathlon victory. She swam a time of 54.06 in the freestyle, a 59.10 in the butterfly and a 1:00.13 in the IM. Her time in the IM was good enough for a new pentathlon record.

Thorson had some tough competition on the day which was led by senior Erin Spadinger. Spadinger, a native of Midland, Texas, placed second with an overall time of 5:11.99. Aimee Stinson, a sophomore from Colorado Springs, Colo., placed third with a combined time of 5:17.39.

In individual events, freshman Olena Moher, a native of Toronto, won the 100 backstroke in a time of 1:01.00 and Spadinger won the 100 breaststroke in a time of 1:06.92.

"Our girls really showed that they are much deeper and much faster than we were last year, which is very exciting," added Johnson. "Our total times were a lot faster this year than they were last year. Heidi had another great meet and broke a couple of records. We were also right on the bubble of breaking a couple more records."

On the men's side of the pentathlon, a new face stepped up to win his first pentathlon in sophomore Sam Shook. Shook, a native of Loveland, Colo., turned in a combined time of 4:33.75 to win the meet by over five seconds. He won both the 100 backstroke (53.87) and 100 IM (54.21) en route to his first place overall showing.

Junior Sam King, a native of Missoula, Mont., finished just behind Shook in a second place time of 4:39.26. Senior Dan Jones, a Loveland, Colo. product, placed third with a time of 4:45.20.

Other event first place event finishes came from freshman Can Ince in the 100 freestyle (48.10), sophomore Alex Larkin in the 100 breaststroke (59.23) and senior Ron Fogel in the 100 butterfly (53.52).

"I think the men are also a little deeper than we were last year but we still have a lot of work to do," added Johnson. "I am real pleased with some of our performances but there are also some areas that we need to improve on."

The Wyoming swimming and diving team will have one final tune-up before opening the regular season as they host the Brown vs. Gold Intrasquad meet next Friday. The meet will begin at 5 p.m. at Corbett Pool.