Greg Byrne's Wildcat Wednesday
Wildcats Travel to Austin for Annual Texas Invitational
By: Arizona Athletics
Release: December 01, 2004
Photo Courtesy: Arizona Athletics
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This Week in the Pool ?-The No. 5 Arizona women and No. 7 men’s swimming and diving team will travel to Austin, Texas, to compete in the annual Texas Invitational on Thurs., Dec. 2-4 in the Lee and Joe Jamail Texas Swim Center. Preliminaries will begin at 10 a.m. and finals start at 6 p.m. (CST).


A Look at the Opponents ?- The Wildcats will take on some of the most elite swimming programs in the country while in Austin including the eighth-ranked Texas men’s team and the No. 4 women’s team. The meet will feature the men’s and women’s teams form Wisconsin, USC and Arizona State as well as the No. 9 Michigan men’s team.

 What Happened Last Year? ?-- Arizona did not compete for a place at last year’s Texas Invitational, as its goal was to qualify as many athletes as possible for the NCAA Championships. The Wildcats concentrated on swimming the required times in order to attend the championships in the spring and they completed their goal by qualifying a combination of 11 athletes from both squads for the 2004 NCAA Championships.


Last Time in the Water ?- In the first Pac-10 competition of the season, the women's team defeated No. 12 USC, 186-113 on Nov. 19, while the men’s team took on the No. 2 Trojans in a two-day dual meet

            The women won 11 out of 16 events starting with the 400y medley relay team of junior Jenna Gresdal, junior Erin Sieper, sophomore Whitney Myers and freshman Courtney Cashion with a time of 4:43.49. Senior Emily Mason dominated the distance freestyle events earning first-place in both the 1000y (10:00.2) and 500y free events (4:53.34).

            In the 200y free, senior Jessica Hayes won with a time of 1:50.64, freshman Lacey Nymeyer finished third (1:51.19) and sophomore Meg Flanagan was fourth (1:54.24). Nymeyer and

Cashion took the top-two spots in the 100y free as Nymeyer won the race with a time of 51.03 and Cashion finished second (51.22). 00

Junior Jenna Gresdal took first-place in two events including the 100y backstroke (54.75) and the 50y free (23.49). Gresdal was second in the 200y backstroke finishing with a time of 2:00.55 and Hayes took third-place (2:00.83). Also in the 50y free, Nymeyer finished second (23.66) and Cashion was third (23.87).

     In the 100y breaststroke, Sieper finished first with a time of 1:03.52, while sophomore Emily Strouse was third (1:05.78) and junior Katie Willis was fourth (1:06.50). Sieper also won the 200y backstroke with a time of (2:16.64).

The Wildcats took the top-three positions in the 400y individual medley as Myers finished first (4:18.89), Mason was second (4:22.08) and Strouse came in third (4:31.44). Myers also finished second in the 200y fly with a time of 2:00.57 and junior Lisa Pursley finished second in the 100y fly (55.71). The 200y free relay team of Hayes, Cashion, Mason and Nymeyer won with a time of 1:34.60.

 “It was a great effort by everyone today,” said head coach Frank Busch. “All the girls pulled through and had an overall good team performance.”

            In the diving well for the women, sophomore Mary Yarrison place second in the 3-meter with 270.68 points and was third in the 1-meter (265.64). Senior Claire Febvay was second in the 1-meter with 268.50 points and finished fourth in the 3-meter (261.23).

 Men vs. USC - After the first day of competition, the Wildcats led USC 92-75. Despite the 17-point lead, the men fell to the Trojans 182-170 Saturday, dropping the Wildcats to 1-1 (0-1 Pac-10).

On day one, Arizona won six out of nine events, including the 200y free relay team of freshman Albert Subirats, junior Dave Rollins, freshman Ivan Barnes and sophomore Adam Ritter with a time of 1:19.96.

            In the 100y free, junior Lyndon Ferns finished first (43.59), junior Simon Burnett was second (44.21) and freshman Jonas Persson was third (44.97). Ferns also took first in the 100y fly (47.25) and Subirats was second (49.33). Burnett finished first in the 200y back (1:46.56) and Barnes won the 200y breaststroke (2:01.22).

            Junior Tyler DeBerry finished second in the 500y free with a time of 4:25.04 and junior John Collier finished second in the 1-meter diving competition with 303.52 points. For the final event of the evening, the 400y medley relay team of freshman Nick Thoman, Barnes, Ferns and Burnett won with an ?'A’ standard qualifying time of 3:14.82.

            While Arizona was not able to triumph over USC, there were many notable performances from the Wildcats. The 200 free relay team of freshman Albert Subirats, junior Dave Rollins, freshman Ivan Barnes and sophomore Adam Ritter won with a time of 1:19.96. The 200 medley relay team of Rollins, senior Nate Stevens, Subirats and freshman Jonas Persson finished second (1:29.89).


            Juniors Simon Burnett and Lyndon Ferns took the top-two positions in the 200 free as Burnett finished first (1:34.19) and Ferns was second (1:36.93). Ferns also won the 50 free with a time of 20.05. In the 100 back, freshman Nick Thoman placed second (49.08) and Burnett finished third (49.32).


            In the 100 breast, Barnes finished second (55.92), Rollins was third (56.26) and Stevens came in fourth (56.60). Junior Tyler DeBerry finished second in the 1650 free (15:31.55) and third in the 200 fly with a time of 1:51.99. Rollins placed second in the 200 individual medley (1:49.98).


            For the final event of the day, the men’s 400 free relay team of Ferns, Persson, Ritter and Burnett won with a time of 2:56.73.


Arizona vs. UCLA - In a dual-meet that was not decided until the last race of the day, the women’s team defeated No. 9 UCLA 149-148, advancing the Wildcats’ record to 3-0 overall (2-0 Pac-10).


Due to a disqualification in the 1000 freestyle for two Arizona swimmers and technical difficulties with the timing system in the 200 backstroke, the women were able to achieve a nail-biting victory over the Bruins.

 “It literally came down to the last relay,” said head coach Frank Busch. “The girls did an amazing job pulling through. We figured if we could win the last race, we could pull off a win by one-point.”


            The Wildcats won eight out of 14 swimming events starting with the 200 medley relay. Juniors Jenna Gresdal, Erin Sieper, sophomore Whitney Myers and freshman Courtney Cashion won the relay with a time of 1:43.55. Freshman Lacey Nymeyer finished first in two events including the 200 free (1:50.56) and the 50 free (23.53).


            In the 100 back, Gresdal won with a time of 55.23 and junior Marshi Smith finished third (56.17). Sieper took first place in both the 100 (1:03.72) and 200 (2:16.99) breaststroke. In the 200 butterfly, senior Emily Mason finished second with a time of 2:02.39 while Myers was not far behind in third (2:02.51). Mason also was second in the 500 free (4:52.89).


            In the 100 free, Gresdal finished second (50.66) and Nymeyer was third (50.78). Senior Jessica Hayes and Smith took the top two positions of the 200 back as Hayes finished first (2:00.00) and Smith was second (2:01.00). (Times were inputted for this race strictly to reflect the order of finish as determined by meet officials).


            Myers won the 200 individual medley with a time of 2:03.03 and placed second (56.11) in the 100 fly. Junior Lisa Pursley was third (56.41). The 200 free relay team of Nymeyer, junior Ryann Hackett, Mason and sophomore Kathryn Elofson, won the race (and the meet) with a time of 1:35.20.


            In the diving well for the women, sophomore Mary Yarrison finished third respectively on both the 1 and 3-meter boards.

“It was certainly a character building day,” said head diving coach Michele Mitchell-Rocha. “We will have to build off of this experience to improve for next meet.”


 According to Head Coach Frank Busch ?- “The Texas Invitational is a meet where I just want to qualify people for the NCAA Championships. I’m pretty optimistic about where we are right now and I’m looking forward to all the opportunities we will have at this meet to qualify. This year will also be different because last year they swam short course in preliminaries and long course during finals due to the summer Olympics. So we will be more successful in the respect that we will be swimming the same distance for both. I think I’m most confident in our relays.”


According to Head Diving Coach Michele Mitchell-Rocha ?- “We only go to this meet about once every three years. This year we are not going because the timing is not good. We have a meet with Northern Arizona on Saturday and the Texas Invitational does not qualify us for NCAAs.”


 Recruits for 2005-06 ?- Six athletes have signed letters of intent with the Arizona swim team for the 2005-06 season. Justine Schluntz, from Albuquerque, NM., will swim distance freestyle events and the 400 individual medley. Taylor Baughman, from Carmel, Ind., and Lindsey Kelly, from Lake Forrest, Ill., are strong contenders in the sprint freestyle events. Anna Turner, from Ft. Collins, Colo., will be competitive in the sprint freestyle and a backstroke events and Kathryn Thompson, from Roseburg, Ore., will also swim backstroke and freestyle. The one male swimmer to sign with Arizona, Matt Barnard from Tucson, Ariz., will swim sprint freestyle events.

Arizona’s Next Action ?- The Arizona men’s and women’s diving team will take on the Northern Arizona Lumberjacks on Sat., Dec. 4 at the Hillenbrand Aquatic Center at 1 p.m. (PST).


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