Feb. 25, 2012
By Sarah Thomsen
Athletic Media Relations
OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla.—CSU got outstanding efforts from Tovè Törnström and Kim Schemahorn on the final day of the Mountain West championships Saturday at the Oklahoma City Aquatic Center. The Rams finished the competition in seventh place with 276 points.
“I was really disappointed with the seventh-place finish," said first-year Head Coach Chris Woodard, "but I’m so happy with these girls. They’re excited about swimming and moving up in their times. I think the jumps we’ve taken as a team bodes well for us in the future.”
Earlier in the night, the Rams had moved up from seventh place to sixth after Schemahorn’s lifetime-best performance in the prelims and fifth-place finish in the finals. Everything was set for the Rams to finish in sixth place, one step up from their 2011 finish, until the 400 Freestyle Relay was disqualified based on the exchange between Jennifer Lamb and Tess Simpson.
However, the night coupled the good with the bad. With only six weeks of preparation in America, Törnström, from Linköping, Sweden, accomplished the lone first-place finish for CSU at the championships with her stellar performance in the 200 Butterfly. Törnström’s prelims had been impressive. Not only did Törnström take first place and have an NCAA-B qualifying time, but she also broke the school record of 2:01.53, which had remained untouched since Kerry Gillespie’s effort in 1986.
Törnström wasn’t planning on letting up, either. In the finals, Törnström cut down her prelim time by almost a full second to one minute, 58.08 seconds. Fran Mathias followed her teammate in 15th place, having set her lifetime best in the prelims.
“Nobody, myself included,” Woodard said, "had any idea that she was going to go that fast. She went much faster than anything she had done prior in Sweden, so it was a quantum leap forward for her. A lot of credit has to go to her coach at home in Sweden and to Tovè herself. She’s just a fierce competitor.”
Sophomore Madeline Mastrup had the highest finish of her career when she placed fifth in the 1650 Freestyle. Mastrup’s time of 16:42.98 almost toppled Lamb’s school record of 16:42.21. Lamb finished close behind in seventh at 16:46.71. Mary Foster followed in 16th place.
Kelly Mathews and Yana Garvey had solid performances in the 200 Breaststroke and 200 Backstroke, respectively. Mathews and Garvey made lifetime bests in their events and finished 11th and 15th correspondingly.
Freshman Mary Kate Hardy took her first points at the championships in platform diving. With her season-best score of 177.20, Hardy took 16th place.
Overall, 2011 champion San Diego State and Boise State, which was the victor of the 2012 championships, battled throughout the four-day competition. In its first showing at the MW championships, Boise State set eight MW records and with 747 points finished only five points ahead of SDSU.
The Rams now prepare to send Madeline Mitchell and Shayna Solomon to NCAA diving zones March 9 and 10, when they have the shot to qualify for the NCAA championships.