Swimming & Diving

Wyoming Swimming and Diving Sweeps Denver

Junior Gene Birks led the Cowboys with first place finishes in two events (file photo).

Junior Gene Birks led the Cowboys with first place finishes in two events (file photo).

Nov. 6, 2004

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Laramie, Wyo. --

The University of Wyoming men's and women's swimming and diving team's swept the Denver Pioneers in dual action, Saturday afternoon at Corbett Pool. The Cowboys beat Denver 149-90 while the women won by a score of 144-99.

The Cowboys (1-0) cruised to their first dual win of the season by placing first in 12 of 13 events and breaking three Corbett Pool Records. Junior Gene Birks and freshman Henry Holmberg led the Cowboys with first place finishes in two events each. Birks won both the 50 freestyle (21.17) and the 100 butterfly (49.46) while Holmberg won the 1000 freestyle (9:52.20) and the 500 freestyle (4:40.54). Birks' 100 butterfly time is a new Corbett Pool record, breaking BYU's Diogo Yabe's time of 49.87 from last year. Freshman Carl Marais set a new Corbett Pool record in the 100 backstroke by swimming a time of 50.90. He breaks junior Ethan Maclean's mark of 51.30 from 2003. Senior Scott Usher won the 100 breaststroke in a time of 56.47, freshman Sam King won the 200 IM in a time of 1:58.16 and senior Grant Kritzinger won the 100 freestyle in a time of 47.91.

The Cowboy divers swept both boards of diving with senior Adam Miller winning the 1-meter board (273.90) and sophomore Kevin Bretting winning the 3-meter board (264.00).

The 200 medley relay team of Marais, Usher, Birks and senior Bryce Perica set a new Corbett Pool record with a time of 1:32.07. The old record of 1:32.12 was swam by BYU last season. The 200 freestyle relay team of Perica, Kritzinger, sophomore Brent Baker and freshman Steve Burnham swam the fastest time of 1:26.66 but swam it as an exhibition and therefore won no points.

"The guys proved to me that they are worthy of the top-25 votes they are getting," said UW head coach Tom Johnson. "Carl, Gene and the 200 medley relay swam awesome while setting new pool records. I was very impressed with our freshman especially Henry, Carl and Sam. It was an impressive win in impressive fashion."

The Cowgirls picked up a huge win as they improved their overall dual record to 2-0 on the season. They earned first place finishes in eight of 13 events. Sophomores Heidi Thorson and Tamara Lehnertz led the way with first place finishes in two events each. Thorson won the 50 freestyle (24.78) and the 100 butterfly (57.89) while Lehnertz won the 100 freestyle (53.89) and the 200 freestyle (1:54.68). Freshman Lindsey Russenberger won the 100 breaststroke in a time of 1:06.50. Sophomore Erin Spadinger (1:06.54) and junior Alex Leziy-Miller (1:07.20) finished in second and third in the event putting an exclamation point on the dual win.

The Cowgirl divers also swept both boards of diving on the day. Freshman Brittany Wainwright won her first career board of diving when she scored 239.03 on the 1-meter. Sophomore Saara Haapanen won the 3-meter with a score of 242.93.

The Cowgirls closed out the dual win with a first place finish in the 200 freestyle relay. Freshman Haley Bonin, Thorson, junior Kenzie Kotby and Lehnertz swam the top time of 1:38.59.

"I am really proud of our girls, they had an awesome meet," said Johnson. "I thought Tamara's two wins, Heidi's wins and our 100 breaststroke going 1-2-3 were key. Our divers were dominating, on both sides, and gave us huge leads coming into the dual.

"Overall, it was a great team effort, everybody contributed, there was a ton of enthusiasm and I am extremely proud of everyone's efforts today."

The swimming and diving teams will return to action in two weeks when the women host San Diego State and the men host the Colorado School of Mines on Sat., Nov. 20. The dual is set to begin at 12 p.m. at Corbett Pool.

 

 

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