Pac-12 Weekly Preview: Cierra Runge to Make Arizona State Debut

Photo Courtesy: Peter H. Bick

As teams return to campus from break, the Pac-12 season returns in full force.

One of the biggest stories of the new year in the conference is the Arizona State debut of Cierra Runge.

The Olympic gold medalists transferred from Wisconsin and will make her debut this weekend.

The meet begins at 11.a.m. local time at Mona Plummer Aquatic against Washington State in their conference opener. The meet is the first competition for the Sun Devils since the Indiana Invitational in November.

For Runge, it is her first. Runge, who won gold in Rio with Team USA in the 800 freestyle relay, trained in Tempe leading up to Rio under current Arizona State head coach Bob Bowman, who served as the head men’s coach that year.

Runge broke an NCAA record in the 500 free and an American record as part of the 800 free relay during her freshman season at Cal on top of notching All-American status in the 400 free relay at Wisconsin. Runge also broke Wisconsin school records in the 200, 500, 1000 and 1650 free events as a Badger.

The Sun Devils own the series history with an all-time record of 5-2. The last win against Washington State came in 2018 while the last loss came in 2015.

Washington State and ASU faced off last year with the Sun Devils coming out on top to the tune of 177-83. The Sun Devil women won 13 of the 14 events in the meet led by Chloe Isleta who notched three wins (100/200 back, 200 IM) with a team-leading 27 points in the victory.

It is one of the many meets happening this weekend.

Washington State will compete at Arizona on Friday before heading down to Arizona State on Saturday.

On Friday, the Stanford men will host Pacific. UCLA also will host the Bruin Diving Invitational from Friday-Sunday.

1 comment

  1. avatar

    Please boycott this meet. Bob Bowman has a public record of sexual harassment. Shame on you for abandoning the story to maintain a “relationship” with him and Michael Phelps.