Nov. 1, 2007
LARAMIE, Wyo. -
For the first time this season, the University of Wyoming swimming and diving team will take to the pool for a dual meet as they travel to Denver to face the Denver Pioneers, Saturday afternoon. The meet is set to begin at 1 p.m. and will be held at DU's El Pomar Natatorium.
"If we swim and dive like we are capable of, this could be the type of meet that college swimming is all about," said UW head coach Tom Johnson. "This is going to be an extremely close meet on both sides. Denver has been very fast this season and they have one of the best young classes in the country. However, I feel that we are equally as talented and this meet should go down to the wire. These teams know each other well and are going to come out hungry."
The Cowgirl swimming and diving team enters the 2007-08 dual season after completing one of the best seasons in UW history last year. After beginning the season 6-0, the Cowgirls finished 8-2 overall and 6-2 in the Mountain West Conference. They placed third in the MWC dual meet standings, the highest finish for UW in conference history.
Fifteen letter winners, including seven First Team All-MWC performers, return for the Cowgirls from that special team. Leading the way for the swimmers will be junior Aimee Stinson. Stinson, a Colorado Springs, Colo. native, earned all-conference honors in three events and set four school records a year ago. Senior Brittany Wainwright, an Evanston, Wyo. product, will lead the Cowgirl divers. Wainwright is a three-time First Team All-MWC performer and holds the UW record in both the one- and three-meter diving events.
"Denver's women looked very good last weekend in a win over Utah and a close loss to Arkansas," said Johnson. "We have a couple of kids that are a little under the weather but should be good to go come Saturday. This is going to be a classic, knockdown, drag out type of meet."
Despite a tough 2-5 dual season last year for the Cowboys, they rebounded and had a great stretch run of the season. They climbed to a fourth place finish at the MWC Championships and won two individual conference championships. One of those champions will return to the pool this season in junior Alex Larkin. Larkin, a Bend, Ore. native, has won two MWC breaststroke titles in his career and is a four-time First Team All-MWC performer. The Cowboys also return the conference's runner up in both butterfly events, Matt Urich. Urich, a junior from Westminster, Colo., placed second at the conference championships in both the 100 and 200 butterfly last year and is a four-time all-conference performer.
"I think that the men's meet is going to come down to our upperclassmen. It is going to be very important for us to get wins in the breaststroke and butterfly events and we need to find a way to win a board of diving and a relay," added Johnson.
Denver and Wyoming are no strangers to one another as they competed against each other on Oct. 12 in the Denver Relays. The Cowgirls edged Denver by six points to win the women's meet while the Cowboys finished 32 team points behind Denver for second place on the men's side. Last season, Wyoming swept Denver in dual action as the Cowgirls won 138-100 and the Cowboys edged Denver 125-118, in Laramie.