PULLMAN, Washington, October 6. WASHINGTON State University will officially open its season on Friday with a 5 p.m. matchup against California, guided by Teri McKeever, in her 14th season as head coach. At the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens, McKeever became the first female to be a member of a United States Olympic coaching staff. Cal will also face Idaho this weekend, in an 11 a.m. contest on Saturday.
Washington State got a taste of action last week when the Cougars held their annual Crimson and Gray meet. Kayli Changstrom won the 100 individual medley and 200 free during the scrimmage and Washington State returns 14 letterwinners from last year’s squad. Erica Quam is entering her fourth year as the Cougars’ head coach.
“Our team is excited for the upcoming challenge of swimming a high caliber program like Cal Berkeley,” Quam said. “For us to get up and face Cal early in the season is a tremendous opportunity for our program. It will help us to prepare for the level of competition that we see at the Pac-10 meet in February. We are taking steps and improving as a program. The better we are about standing up behind the blocks and approaching each race with confidence, the more we can close the gap between us and our competitors, and the more progress we are going to make as a program by the end of the season. Getting up and racing elite level athletes who go and compete at the NCAA Championships can only help us – our goal is to be there too.”
California finished third at last year’s Pac-10 Championships and claimed eighth place at the NCAA Champs. The Golden Bears will unveil Jessica Hardy as part of their lineup. At the World Championships in July, Hardy took silver in the 50 and 100 breaststrokes. During the semifinals of the 100 breast, Hardy clocked a world-record time of 1:06.20.