Cowgirls Finish Fourth at Mountain West Championships
Feb. 22, 2014
SAN ANTONIO, Texas -
The Cowgirl swimming and diving team wrapped up the Mountain West Championships on Saturday evening in San Antonio, Texas with style, breaking three school records. Wyoming finished fourth at the event with 455 points, as head coach Tom Johnson has finished fourth or higher in eight consecutive MW Championships. Boise State earned the MW title with 735 points followed by defending champion San Diego State with 633 and Nevada at 507.
"I was proud of the way we finished and I was proud of how we fought for each other," Johnson said. "Unfortunately, we couldn't find a way to win an event, but I give the girls a ton of credit as we swam to the bitter end."
Senior Morgan Hartigan, appearing in her final MW Championship broke Kelsey Conci's school record in the 100 freestyle set in 2011 with a time of 48.77. She also was a part of the Cowgirls' school-record 400 freestyle relay team that finished fourth at 3.19.67. She was joined in the race by junior Melanie McDonough, sophomore Emily Ridout and junior Jordan Denny.
"Her mark under 48 seconds is so impressive and it shows how hard she has worked in that event," Johnson said.
The divers also set records on the final day of the championships. Sophomore Kari Campbell broke the Cowgirls' school record finishing fourth in the platform with a tally at 234.96. It was six points better than Emily Keefer's 228.10 set in 2007. Senior Amanda Fay also passed Keefer recording a 229.23 on her way to a seventh place showing. The marks also qualified each diver for the NCAA "Zone" Diving Championships.
"I'm so proud of Kari and Amanda," Wyoming diving coach Yahya Radman said. "It was great to break the school record three times within hours of each other, it just shows they have really bought into the program."
Another impressive feat for the Cowgirls came in the 200 backstroke. Denny finished second in the event with the second-fastest time in school history at 1:56.22. She was followed by freshman Abby Sullivan in seventh place with the third-fastest time in UW history at 1:59.34.
Junior Claudia Carlson added another second place finish for UW with a time of 1:59.38 in the 200 butterfly. It was the third fastest mark in UW history. Senior Leah Roesler added a personal-best and fourth fastest time in school history at 1:59.78 on her way to finishing fifth in the 200 butterfly.
In the 1,650 freestyle sophomore Nicole Hlavacek recorded the second-best mark in Wyoming history in the event finishing fifth at 16:37.57. Junior Aliyah Mikulski and sophomore Emma Dow also cracked the top-10 list in UW history. Mikulski finished 12th at 16:56.22 with Dow touching in at 17:01.22.
The 200 breaststroke saw junior Halie Lacey finish eighth in the event with the eight fastest mark at UW with a time of 1:59.38. Sophomore Molly Coonce finished 11th by ending the consolation final strong posting the sixth-fastest time in school history at 2:16.32.
The Cowgirls ended the championship with six school records. Hartigan set two individual marks with Campbell and the 400 freestyle relay team adding the other.
"This conference has elevated itself and is just crazy fast," Johnson stated. "Our times rival some of the best conferences in the country."
For Cowgirls with NCAA "B" provisional times they will now wait for the NCAA Psych Sheets to come out to see if they will earn spots in next month's NCAA Championship meets. Wyoming divers Fay, Campbell and Bishop are all qualified for next month's NCAA Zone "E" Diving Championships on at least one board and will continue training before traveling to Colorado Springs, Colo. on March 13.