Dec 082003
 
Authors: Andrew Woerpel

The CSU Rams swimming and diving team faced its first bit of

adversity in Mountain West Conference competition on Dec. 6. The

Rams’ dual meet Saturday at Moby Pool against Air Force and San

Diego State started out with a scare. The Rams lost the first three

of their four events to the Aztecs.

“I think our team was concerned after the first four events, but

our team is too deep and too good not to battle back,” said head

coach John Mattos

Battle back the Rams would. The team ended up winning nine of

the 16 events over SDSU and 15 of the 16 over Air Force.

“I expected a little more of a fight from Air Force, but I knew

SDSU would do exactly what they did,” Mattos said. “SDSU has good

distance swimmers and very good athletes; they’re not just someone

we can kick around without question.”

CSU’s 200-yard medley relay team, made up of freshman Brette

Winegarner, sophomore Rachelle Kula, junior Lyndsey McCaslin and

senior Paula Langner, brought the Rams their confidence and their

first lead by finishing first with a time of one minute, 49.37

seconds. McCaslin and fellow seniors Jamie Robinson and Lissa

Fischer went 1-2-3 in the 100 breaststroke to ignite the team.

Following the sweep in the 100 breaststroke, senior Corinne

Hofstetter won the 200 butterfly in a speedy time of 2:08.29.

Senior Lori Vigil, last week’s MWC diver of the week, also took

first in both the 1-meter and 3-meter diving events for the second

straight meet with scores of 277.40 and 289.60.

The Rams’ victory was a little more impressive than it lets on.

The Rams were without three of their top swimmers, seniors Kristen

Schneider and Katie Peck and sophomore Elizabeth Jones. The three

were all competing in the U.S. Open, which was held in Federal Way,

Wash. The meet was held as a qualification meet for the Olympic

Trials to be held in Long Beach, Calif., in early July. Out of the

three Schneider placed the best with a 10th place finish in the 100

backstroke in a time of 1:04.41 – a U.S. Olympic qualification

time. Schneider also placed 30th in the 200 backstroke with a time

of 2:22.21 and 55th in the 100 freestyle with a time of 59.06. Peck

placed 38th in the 400 IM with a time of 5:03.71 and 82nd in the

200 IM. Jones finished 48th in the 50 freestyle with a time of

27.13, 96th in the 100 freestyle with a time of 1:00.19 and 116th

in the 200 freestyle with a time of 2:10.94.

“It felt pretty good to qualify, but it doesn’t mean a lot,”

Schneider said. “Just hearing what everyone else thinks about it

makes me feel good.

“I’m really happy the team won this weekend with Katie,

Elizabeth and I gone. Every team in the conference is scared of us

because we’re the team to beat now.”

The Rams look to focus on their next conference meets Jan. 16-17

against Brigham Young and Utah.

“We have a lot of time to get prepared for the final push to the

conference championship,” Mattos said. “If we swim like we have

been we’ll rock and roll right through the next two on our way to

the conference championship.”

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