March 20, 1999
ATHENS, Ga. - Erin Eldridge, a Washington State University junior, finished 13th in the 200 meter breaststroke at the NCAA women's swimming and diving championships Saturday, earning her second honorable mention All-American honor in as many days.
Eldridge finished 16th in her Saturday morning preliminary heat in 2:15.23, then came back in the consolation finals with a 2:14.61 effort that was good enough for fifth. Only the top eight advanced from the preliminary heats to the finals, with the second group of eight moving into the consolation finals.
Friday Eldridge captured 13th in the 100 meter breaststroke to become the first Cougar women to earn All-American honorable mention honors.
Riding the success of Eldridge in both consolation finals, the Cougars finished 30th in the team scoring. Host Georgia won the women's title, their first NCAA championship.
"Erin's times are not best-time performances, but they are good swims," Cougar coach Rocco Aceto commented from the meet. "When you get to the NCAA's, it is more or less racing, instead of racing the clock."
"Erin is breaking into the elite level and it is doing wonders for the program," said the Cougar coach.
Eldridge improved from the preliminaries to the finals both days, something she has not always done. "She wasn't afraid (at the NCAA meet) and I think it shows her experience and maturity as an athlete," Aceto added.