LARAMIE, Wyoming, January 19. WYOMING's swimming and diving program had a big Thursday night as they swept Washington in dual action at Corbett Pool. The Cowgirls beat the Huskies by a score of 140-97 and the Cowboys won by a final score of 144-91.
"I am so happy for our team, this is a big win," said UW head coach Tom Johnson. "It has been a while since we beat a Pac-10 school and I am proud of our kids for this accomplishment. We have swum a lot of Pac-10 teams recently and we really like to measure ourselves against them. To be able to beat one is a big step. I hope that we can build off of this to great ready for the tough conference schedule that lies ahead of us."
The Cowgirls, who improved to 5-0 in dual meets this season, matched the best start ever by a Wyoming swimming and diving team with tonight's win. The Cowboys improve to 2-1 on the season.
Led by a first place finish in both relays and two first place finishes from sophomore Aimee Stinson, the Cowgirls won eight of 13 events to claim tonight's dual. The Cowgirl relays had an exceptional day winning both the 400 medley and 400 freestyle relays. In the medley relay, freshman Olena Moher, seniors Erin Spadinger and Heidi Thorson and freshman Cassie Stelow combined to swim a first place time of 3:56.14. Thorson, Stinson and seniors Katie Bigger and Tamara Lehnertz swam the fastest time in the freestyle relay, touching the wall in 3:34.93. Stinson had two great performances in the distance freestyle events winning both. She turned in a time of 10:38.03 in the 1000 freestyle and 5:06.49 in the 500 freestyle.
The other two first place swims for the Cowgirls came from Thorson and freshman Kari Budd. Thorson won the 100 freestyle with a time of 53.23 and Budd won the 200 butterfly in a time of 2:11.41.
The Cowboys won both relay events en route to a first place finish in eight of the 13 events. In the 400 medley relay, sophomores Sam Shook, Alex Larkin, Matt Urich and freshman Vinny Crispino swam a first place time of 3:28.40. Sophomore Eli Bell, freshman Tommy Gregory, junior Levi Bell and Crispino turned in the fastest time in the 400 freestyle relay and touched the wall in 3:09.86.
Leading the way for the Pokes individually was Eli Bell who won both the 100 and 200 freestyles. He turned in a time of 47.90 in the 100 and 1:43.75 in the 200. Other Cowboy first place finishes came from Gregory in the 50 freestyle (21.96), Shook in the 200 IM (1:56.98) senior Ron Fogel in the 200 butterfly (1:54.10) and Larkin in the 200 breaststroke (2:09.60).
A big boost to both the Cowboys and Cowgirls came from the diving boards. Wyoming claimed all the diving points in both dual meet because Washington does not have a diving team. While competing against each other, the Wyoming divers had some great individual performances. Senior Saara Haapanen set a Corbett Pool record in the 1-meter event by posting a score of 289.57. Her mark breaks a record that dates back to 1990. Senior Kevin Bretting dove to the second best 3-meter score in Wyoming history at 367.42.
"I thought that by coming out and winning both medley relays we gained a lot of confidence that carried us throughout the meet. They were at a disadvantage without diving but it is really nice to know that we would have won both meets without those diving points. We had a lot of season best marks and I thought a lot of our younger kids really rose up and figured things out today," added Johnson.