Feb. 25, 2002
COUGARS READY FOR PAC-10's: The Washington State University women's swim team heads to Long Beach, Calif., for the 2002 Pacific-10 Conference Swimming Championships at Belmont Plaza, Feb. 28-March 2.
"Swimming fast is what it's all about right now," WSU Head Coach Rocco Aceto said. "If you swim fast, placing takes care of itself, NCAA cuts take care of themselves, and school records take care of themselves."
The Cougars will face some of the toughest competition in the nation with five Pac-10 teams ranked in the national top-10 according to the College Swim Coaches Association of America. The ranked teams in the Pac-10 include No. 1 Stanford, No. 4 California, No. 7 Arizona, No. 9 USC, No. 10 Arizona State and No. 11 UCLA.
Five individual champions from 2001 are back to defend a total of seven Pac-10 titles this year. California sophomore Natalie Coughlin won the 200 backstroke at Pac-10's last season, then went on to win the 100 butterfly and 100 and 200 backstroke at the NCAA Championships, breaking NCAA records in all three events. Coughlin also holds American records in the 100 fly and 100 back, and owns the world title in the 100 back. Other returning champions include Stanford's Jessica Foschi (500 free, 1,650 free), Tara Kirk (100 breast, 200 breast), Shelly Ripple (200 IM) and USC's Michala Kwasny (400 IM).
"If you compare the Pac-10 to other conferences across the country, because of the amount of depth in the Pac-10, it is much faster than any other conference," Aceto said. "It can be overwhelming if you don't have the experience, but you've got to look at it as an opportunity to gain experience competing at a high level."
Washington State placed a program-best seventh at the Pac-10 Championships last year, amassing 432 points. Cougar junior Melissa Hubley placed fifth in the 200 butterfly in a school-record time and 15th in the 100 butterfly at the 2001 Pac-10's, before going on to place 25th and 36th in those events at the NCAA Championships. In all, WSU broke eight school records en route to its most successful conference championship meet.
The Cougars have amassed a dual meet record of 8-3 this season with a win over Pac-10 rival Oregon State in their last competition. Since that victory, the team has focused its training to optimize performance at the Pac-10 Championships.
"We've been working on tapering, where workouts are shorter and more precise," Aceto said. "Instead of sets of 40 to 60 minutes, the sets have been three to eight minutes. We're fine tuning to focus more on recovery of the body, rather than building up the body."
NEXT COMPETITION: Those who qualify will travel to Austin, Texas for the 2002 NCAA Swimming and Diving Championships, March 21-23. Cougar athletes will also complete at the Canadian National Championships in Winnepeg, Manitoba March 12-16, and at the USA National Championships in Minneapolis, Minn., March 19-23.
LAST COMPETITION: Washington State swept Oregon State in a pair of dual meets Feb 1-2, raising its record to 8-3 this season. With the wins, the Cougars extended their Gibb Pool win streak to nine, where they have not lost since Feb. 5, 2000, ironically, to Oregon State.
Lindsay Henahan, a junior from Rochester, N.Y., proved to be a star of the weekend for WSU, winning four total events. With sophomore Taryn Ternent, the Washington State school-record holder for the 50 and 100 freestyle events, out due to illness, Henahan provided a spark for her team, sweeping the two events both Friday and Saturday.
WSU's Andree-Anne LeRoy also won four individual events. The sophomore from Nanaimo, British Columbia claimed victory in the 200 individual medley and 200 backstroke Saturday, after winning the 100 backstroke and 400 individual medley Friday night.
Cougar junior Rebecca Cohen, who hails from Portland, Ore. and has trained with many athletes on the Oregon State team, also played a significant role in the WSU victory. Cohen claimed victory in the 200 freestyle and placed second in the 500 freestyle both days.
Junior co-captain Melissa Hubley won the 200 butterfly both days as well the 100 butterfly Friday.
COUGARS RANKED IN NATIONAL TOP 50: Washington State swimmers currently hold 13 individual marks ranked in the top 50 nationally by Taper and Shave's College Quick 50. All five of the Cougar relays also rank in the NCAA top-26.
Rank Name Event Time 14 Rachel Dong 100 butterfly 54.75 17 Andree-Anne LeRoy 200 individual medley 2:01.73 17 Melissa Hubley 100 butterfly 54.92 19 Andree-Anne LeRoy 200 backstroke 1:59.64 28 Katie Byrnes 200 backstroke 2:01.23 32 Taryn Ternent 100 freestyle 50.44 35 Rachel Dong 100 breaststroke 1:03.54 36 Andree-Anne LeRoy 100 backstroke 56.23 36 Jill Olson 1,650 freestyle 16:56.31 39 Melissa Hubley 200 butterfly 2:01.33 42 Taryn Ternent 50 freestyle 23.42 43 Andree-Anne LeRoy 400 individual medley 4:21.67 45 Lindsay Henahan 100 butterfly 55.68
Rank Event Time 9 200 medley relay 1:42.33 Chinn, Dong, Henahan, Ternent 10 200 freestyle relay 1:32.82 Ternent, Dong, Henahan, LeRoy 10 400 freestyle relay 3:23.27 LeRoy, Hubley, Dong, Ternent 16 800 freestyle relay 7:27.57 LeRoy, Hubley, Cohen, Taylor 26 400 medley relay 3:47.97 Byrnes, Swanson, Hubley, Henahan
WSU EVENT WINNERS: In the Cougars' 11 dual meets this season, Melissa Hubley and Andree-Anne LeRoy tie for the team lead with 10 dual-meet wins each (the figure in parenthesis represents wins as a relay team member).
1. Andree-Anne LeRoy 10 (8) 1. Melissa Hubley 10 (4) 3. Rebecca Cohen 6 (3) 4. Lindsay Henahan 5 (11) 4. Katie Byrnes 5 (1) 6. Rachel Dong 4 (12) 7. Sasha Taylor 3 (1) 7. Semah Zavareh 3 (1) 7. Jill Olson 3 10. Taryn Ternent 2 (5) 11. Christina Swanson 1 12. Nicole Chinn (6) 12. Sara Schmied (5) 12. Jadine Louw (2)
COACH ROCCO ACETO: Rocco Aceto is currently in his fifth year as head coach of the WSU women's swim team. Under his direction, the Cougars have sent athletes to the NCAA Championships four years in a row, gained their first three-time NCAA All-American, garnered recognition as the second best swimming team in the nation for academics, eclipsed school records 38 times and established 101 positions in the WSU All-Time top 10 list in his four years with the team.
Prior to his appointment at WSU, Aceto served for two years as the assistant coach for the men's and women's swimming programs at Auburn University.
Originally from Portland, Maine, Aceto competed on the swim team at his alma mater, North Carolina State, establishing school and Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) records in the 50 freestyle and 400 and 800 freestyle relays during his collegiate career.
"When you put these three student-athletes together, learning to be leaders, I think we have a bright future for this team," Aceto said.
Hubley, a junior from Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, Canada, comes off a season in which she broke her own school record in the 200 butterfly while placing fifth at the Pac-10 Championships, qualified for the NCAA Championships, and received the team's Most Outstanding Award. During the summer, she went on to win a gold medal in the 200-meter butterfly at the 2001 Canada Games.
Dong's collegiate career got off to a fast start during her freshman year. The native of Paramount, Calif., broke the school record in the 100 butterfly and contributed to three relay teams setting WSU records at the 2001 Pac-10 Championships. Currently, she holds positions on seven Cougar top-10 lists for individual events. After the season, Dong received the team's Most Improved Award and Coach's Award.
Ternent also excelled in her first year as a Cougar. The sophomore from Edenvale, South Africa smashed the school record in the 50 freestyle en route to placing eighth at the Pac-10 Championships last season, and swam on two relay teams that set WSU records. In addition, Ternent owns places on three other school top-10 lists.
ATHLETES IN WSU RECORD BOOKS: Cougar swimmers currently hold 55 positions on WSU's all-time top 10 lists for individual events, including 10 school records: Rachel Dong-100 fly (54.75 seconds), Melissa Hubley-200 fly (2:00.36), Andree-Anne LeRoy-200 IM (2:02.74), 400 IM (4:21.67), 100 back (56.34), 200 back (1:59.64), Jill Olson-1,000 free (10:12.96), 1,650 free (16:56.31), Taryn Ternent-50 free (23.26), 100 free (50.44). The following swimmers currently hold positions in WSU top 10 lists:
Andree-Anne LeRoy-200 IM (1st), 400 IM (1st), 100 back (1st), 200 back (1st), 100 free (3rd), 200 free (3rd) Rachel Dong-100 fly (1st), 50 free (2nd), 100 breast (2nd), 200 breast (2nd), 200 IM (2nd), 100 free (5th) Taryn Ternent-50 free (1st), 100 free (1st), 100 back (3rd), 100 fly (8th) Jill Olson-1,650 free (1st), 1,000 freestyle (1st), 500 free (5th) Melissa Hubley-200 fly (1st), 100 fly (2nd), 500 free (10th) Rebecca Cohen-500 free (2nd), 200 free (4th), 1,650 freestyle (3rd), 1,000 freestyle (4th), 100 free (8th) Katie Byrnes-200 back (2nd), 100 back (2nd), 400 IM (6th), 500 free (7th) Sasha Taylor-200 free (2nd), 200 back (4th), 100 back (7th) Lindsay Henahan-100 fly (3rd), 100 free (4th), 50 free (4th), 200 fly (7th) Jadine Louw-500 free (3rd), 1,650 free (4th), 200 free (6th) Semah Zavareh-500 free (4th), 1,650 free (5th), 1,000 free (8th) Nicole Chinn-200 IM (5th), 100 fly (6th), 100 back (6th), 200 back (8th), 400 IM (10th) Christina Swanson-100 breast (6th), 50 free (8th), 200 breast (10th) Sara Schmied-50 free (7th), 100 free (7th)