Feb. 24, 2001
FEDERAL WAY, Wash.-- The Washington State University women's swim team recorded a seventh place team finish Saturday at the Pacific-10 Conference Women's Swimming Championships. This improves upon the Cougar swimming program's previous highest placing at Pac-10's, eighth, which had been accomplished nine times since 1987 and most recently last year. In addition, this year marked the first time WSU has beaten intrastate rival Washington in both a dual meet and a championship in the same season.
"I'm so excited for all the Cougars that have been through the program, both the previous coaches and swimmers," WSU coach Rocco Aceto said. "We did what the program hadn't done, which was pick it up a notch and do things such as beat the University of Washington at this meet as well as in a dual meet."
Overall, defending champion Arizona successfully defended their title with a total of 1,229.5 points, while runner-up UCLA tallied 1,130, followed by Southern California 1,099.5, Stanford 1,033.5, California 942.5, Arizona State 784, WSU 432, Washington 365, and Oregon State 285.
Yet another WSU school record fell today at the hands of the 400 freestyle relay team. The foursome of Rachel Dong (Paramount, Calif.), Taryn Ternent (Edenvale, South Africa), Andree-Anne LeRoy (Nanaimo, British Columbia, Canada), and Lindsay Henahan (Rochester, N.Y.) recorded a time of 3 minutes, 25.99 seconds en route to a seventh place finish.
Doing her part to rewrite the Cougar record books, sophomore Melissa Hubley (Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, Canada) smashed her own school record in the 200 butterfly. Hubley's time of 2:00.36 in the preliminaries put her into the championship final where she placed fifth.
In the 1,650 freestyle, Jill Olson (Seattle, Wash.) clocked a 17:03.65 in the 1,650 freestyle, which put the WSU sophomore into second place on the school's all-time list for that event and gave her 15th place in the meet. Also, Semah Zavareh (Houston, Texas) swam a time of 17:23.14, good enough for 21st overall and 4th on WSU's all-time list.
In the 200 backstroke, LeRoy clocked a 2:01.99 in the finals, claiming 10th place and second on the Cougar all-time list. Freshman Sasha Taylor (Smiths Falls, Ontario, Canada) claimed 18th in the finals and fourth on the school's list with a 2:03.28. And Katie Byrnes (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.) swam a 2:03.36 in the prelims, putting her fifth all-time on the school's list, then went on to place 15th in the finals.
Freshman Taryn Ternent clocked a 50.92 in the finals of the 100 freestyle, securing 11th place overall and second on WSU's list. Sophomore Lindsay Henahan grabbed 23rd in the same event with a time of 52.36.
Cougar freshman Rachel Dong moved herself into second on the school's all-time list for the 200 breaststroke by marking a 2:21.63, which placed her 23rd in the meet.
Also in the 200 butterfly, WSU sophomore Rachelle Carano (Reno, Nev.) swam a 2:08.02 and finished 22nd.
This year's Pac-10 Championship meet served as the culmination of a record-breaking season for Washington State. The team began by beating cross-state rival Washington for the first time, continued by establishing a program record nine dual-meet wins, then went on to finish a best ever seventh place at Pac-10's while breaking eight school records.
"We needed to try and focus on being more competitive in the Pac-10, and as you can see by all the American records broken here that it's a difficult task to accomplish," Aceto said. "We broke a total of eight school records, and those records are starting to become more competitive outside of WSU. When you compare us to all the other Division I programs, we're beginning to put ourselves in the upper echelon of many events. We still haven't successfully come through with all our talent, which is a little frustrating, but that's part of the growing pains when you're starting to get better."
Those who qualify when seedings are announced will be able to compete in the 2001 NCAA Championships, held in Long Island, N.Y., March 15-17.