Feb. 20, 2014
SAN ANTONIO, Texas — Day 2 of the Mountain West Championships met the Rams with an even tougher pool than Wednesday, and CSU fell three spots to a ninth-place tie.
“It’s been a tough Championship,” Head Coach Christopher Woodard said. “Thus far we haven’t been able to make an impact in the pool whatsoever. We just have to get rest tonight and get ready for tomorrow. We have a lot of our strongest events coming up, so we still have a good chance to move up.”
Thursday’s highlight was earned by one of the team’s youngest members. Freshman Allison Arnold had the highest finish of the day for CSU in an individual swimming event, placing 19th in the 500 Freestyle. The Parker, Colo. native cut substantial time off her season best in the prelims only to slice another two seconds off her time (4:56.47) during the finals.
Jessica Shepard also had a strong performance in the 200 IM. The sophomore earned her season best, finishing 21st at 2:04.54.
Two divers put themselves in scoring position on the 3-Meter springboards. While none advanced to the night finals, Ariana Milone and Melissa Bollig came up big in the consolation finals.
“We struggled early on,” Head diving coach Kevin Witt said. “Prelims were pretty rough, but we got a couple of the girls in the consolation finals and both Ariana and Melissa did a great job to score.”
Milone and Bollig made up for the prelims in a big way. Milone added more than 20 more points to her prelim score to win the consolation finals with 291.33 points and earn ninth overall. Bollig moved up four positions from her prelim finish, coming in third in the consolation finals and 11th overall at 273.03.
The Rams continued to drop considerable time off their season bests, but are finding it hard to make it to night swims.
“It’s a testament to the conference as a whole; everyone is just amazingly fast,” Woodard said. “For example, Allison’s time last year would have put her in the consolation finals, but this time she would have had to drop another three seconds to be top 16. All teams at all levels are just swimming very fast, and it’s very difficult to get yourself in the top 16.”
Friday the Rams will get to compete in some of their strongest swimming events, including the 400 Medley Relay, 400 IM, 100 Butterfly, 200 Freestyle, 100 Breaststroke and 100 Backstroke.
For every event – both prelims and finals – live streaming will be available, free of charge, through the Mountain West Network. Additional information – including heat sheets, records, highlight video and more – can be found through the Mountain West Championships Central.
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