Sept. 6, 2010
PULLMAN, Wash - The Washington State women's swim team competed in ideal conditions at the Snake River Challenge, Labor Day. The annual event consists of a 2.2 mile swim on the Snake River from Granite Point to Wawawai Landing, followed by a 2.2 mile run back to Granite Point.
Senior Jennifer Dean and junior Jessie Craig were neck-and-neck coming out the water to the transition station, with senior Talor Whitaker right at their heels. Once the women were on dry land, Dean used her six years of cross country experience to separate from the pack, finishing with a winning time of 62 minutes, 3 seconds. The Campbell, Calif., native won the event last year but was able to improve her time by over nine minutes.
"I just wanted to push myself and bring the most out of myself and do whatever I could to try and win it again," Dean said.
"It's great to see the returners on the team come back even more prepared than they were the year before and they just keep improving," WSU Head Coach Erica Quam said.
This WSU tradition kicks off the season each year and not only gives the team an intense workout to start the year, but allows the swimmers to become stronger as a group before the season begins.
"It's a really good way to start off the year," Dean said. "This year we have nine new girls and 14 returners and to do something this grueling right off the bat, it can only bring you closer."
Quam said she was impressed with how closely the girls finished the swim, and has a lot to look forward to during the 2010-11 season.
"I think we have a group with a lot of great energy," Quam said. "They are supportive and they are doing a lot of things from a leadership standpoint. I think we have a strong group with a lot of character and I am really excited for this season."
The Cougars will open the season with a meet against Idaho and Seattle, October 8, 2010 in Moscow, Idaho.