University of Nevada Takes Home Mountain West Championship Victory

Photo Courtesy: Kalina DiMarco

By Emma Foster, Swimming World College Intern 

The University of Nevada made history with their first-ever Mountain West championship, beating out Boise State by 13 points. After four years of placing second and third, they were paced by strong swims such as Senior Yawen Li’s to take home the victory.

Li backed up her victory in the 400 IM tonight with another win in the 200 breast, touching out Maria Harutjunjan of Wyoming. Li posted a 2:10.58, while Harutjunjan was second in 2:12.18. Nevada teammate Arantxa Medina was third in 2:13.33.

In the 1650, Genevieve Miller literally outdid herself, breaking her own MW Champ and MW All Time records set last year. Her time of 16:01.39 was more than 20 seconds faster than the second place swim, which went to Riley Spitser of San Jose State who was second in 16:22.79. The bronze was claimed by Miller’s teammate Sara Menke of Air Force who posted a 16:31.47.

In the 200 back, Ugna Mazutaityte of Fresno State out touched Samantha Wicks of Boise State, posting a 1:54.47 to Wicks 1:54.76. Allyson Kleinsorgen of Boise State was third in 1:56.59.

The 100 free was a tight race with the top three separated by only 5-hundredths of a second. Michelle Troup claimed the gold in a time of 49.12, which outdid Whitney Weisz of San Diego’s effort of 49.14. Emily Ridout of Wyoming was just behind in third in 49.17.

Sita Kusserow of Nevada won the last individual event of the meet with a swift effort of 1:58.68. Rachael Kelch of San Diego State was second in 1:59.41, while Goezde Tekin of UNLV was third in 2:00.44.

Nevada overtook Boise when the diving events rolled around, as Krysta Palmer of Nevada nabbed the Platform Diving event with a point score of 362.15, while teammate Zoe Lei was second in 278.00. Keely Bishop of Wyoming was third in 248.70.

While ultimately taking second, Boise State made a statement in the final event of the evening setting a MW Champ and MW All Time record to overtake San Diego State’s record of 3:16.60 from 2014. The team of Brittany Aoyama (49.14) Wicks (48.73) Emma Chard (48.69) and Katelyn Martin (48.82) posted a time of 3:15.38. They were followed by Nevada who was second in 3:18.16, while UNLV was third in 3:19.51.

Final Team Scores were:

  1. University of Nevada 664
  2. Boise State 651
  3. San Diego State University 511
  4. University of Wyoming 457
  5. UNLV 373
  6. San Jose State 258
  7. University of New Mexico 248
  8. Colorado State University 223
  9. Air Force 207
  10. Fresno State 182
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Author: Emma Foster

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Emma Foster is an English and Gender Studies major at Seattle University and is a part of the Redhawks NCAA Division I team. Before college, Emma was a member of the Helena Lions Swim Team and the Helena High School squad.

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