Feb. 13, 2009
The Wildcats will host its final dual meet of the season on Saturday when it hosts Arizona State at the Hillenbrand Aquatic Center beginning at 1 p.m.
Last Time Out
Last time in the water, Arizona wound up with a split, the men's team topped top-ranked Texas, while the women were closely defeated by the Longhorns. Standouts for Arizona included Jake Tapp who won five total events and Alyssa Anderson who won the 500 free and finished runner up in the 1650 free.
Cats in the Rankings:
In the latest College Swim Coaches Association of America Poll, the men are slotted at No. 2 while the women rank in at No. 4. Arizona State is unranked.
Senior diver Craig Sheedy and freshman swimmer Nimrod Shapira Bar-Or were named student-athletes of the month for their work in the classroom over November and December. They were selected by the C.A.T.S. Academics staff based on four different criteria - outstanding effort, demonstrated improvement, overall academic performance and consistent citizenship through personal character, integrity and role-model actions.
Scouting the Devils
The Arizona State Swim and Dive team is led overwhelmingly by its diving program. Micky Benedetti, Cameron Bradshaw, Erin Hobbs and Brittany Jumer have all qualified for the NCAA Zone "E" Meet. All four earned their spot in the meet against Washington. Last week in Dallas, Cameron Bradshaw set a new personal best in the three-meter. His new career-best is 342.53. Bradshaw placed third in the event.
Swimmer of the Month
Jake Tapp was named swimmer of the month for January by the Pac-10 Conference. Tapp won eight events for the Wildcats in the month of January, including five in Arizona's upset over top-ranked Texas. The Langley, British Columbia, native placed first in the 100 and 200 backstrokes in Arizona's victory against No. 4 California, touching in at 48.45 and 1:45.79, respectively. Against Stanford, Tapp swam the anchor leg of the 400 free relay team that placed first for the Wildcats.
Happenings at the Kasser Family Pool
Recently Ben Grado competed in the USA Diving selection camp in Columbus, Ohio to determine qualifiers for three international events in 2009.
Against Texas, Ainsley Oliver placed fourth in both the one-and-three meter dives with scores of 262.27 and 276.23, respectively. Grado was the leading diver for the men with runner-up finishes in both the one and three meter.
The Savvy Veteran
Junior co-captain Jack Brown has provided leadership and experience to the men's team this season. The Atlanta, Ga. native is among Arizona's top performer's in the individual medley events as well as the long distance freestyle. Against the Bay Area schools, Brown won the 200 IM event against Cal and 400 IM event vs. Stanford.
Long Distance Jean
Junior Jean Basson has established himself as the Arizona men's team top long distance swimmer. During the Texas Invite, Basson won the 500 freestyle with an "A" cut time of 4:13.10 (currently second fastest in the country this year) and finished runner-up in the 1650 freestyle. Basson is also the men's top performer in the 200 free, 500 free, 1000 free and 1650 free.
Head Coach Frank Busch
Entering his 20th year as head coach, Frank Busch has transformed the University of Arizona swimming and diving into one of the nation's most powerful programs.
The 2007-08 season was a breakthrough for Busch and his charges, as both the men's and women's swim teams captured NCAA championship, the first two in school history. Over the course of seven days the Wildcats used a team-first mantra to rise to the top of the collegiate swimming world in dominating fashion - the men prevailed by 94 points and the women triumphed by 136. The squads combined to win two individual national championships, eight relay national championships and earn a total of 57 All-America accolades.
For his efforts, Busch earned both the men's and women's NCAA Coach-of-the-Year accolades, an honor he has earned six times in his career. Busch's 2008 campaign was capped by a successful Olympic experience. He was named an assistant coach for the United States swim team, where a total of 15 of his current or former swimmers participated and represented seven different nations at the Beijing Games.
Arizona will begin preparations for the championship season following today's meet. The women's swim team and entire dive squad will head to Federal Way, Wash. for the Pac-10 Championships, Feb. 25-28.