Nov. 18, 2011
By Sarah Thomsen
Athletic Media Relations
HOUSTON, Texas – The Rams drop a position at the Phill Hansel Cougar Classic Invite at the Campus Recreation and Wellness Center Natatorium, Friday. CSU ends the night in fifth place with 294 points.
Coming off of their performance Thursday, where they broke a school record and ended the day in fourth place, the Rams had high expectations for Friday.
“I think it gave them a great kick,” Head Coach Chris Woodard said. “I think they were really fired up and I think it carried over today. They did show that they were human today, but I’m hoping that tomorrow they’ll focus on the task at hand and have some big swims.”
“Overall I’m really proud,” Woodard said. “I was really happy with our morning swims. Tonight there were a couple of hiccups. A couple of spots where we were a little flat. That was a little disappointing, but we’re trying to put that in perspective and look at the big picture. It’s really hard to be disappointed. They’re exceeding my expectations just a little bit. But there are always things to fix, like being a little flat the second day. We can’t afford to do that at conference.”
Junior Kelly Mathews had the swim of her collegiate career in the 100 Breaststroke. Mathews earned 14 points for the team, placing fifth with a swim of one minute, 3.22 seconds.
Jennifer Lamb cut over 10 seconds from her season best in the 400 IM for a fifth-place finish with a time of 4:26.87. Lamb was back in the pool for the 200 Freestyle where she placed seventh. She continued racking up points for CSU in the 800 Freestyle Relay. Lamb led off the relay, followed by teammates: Arianne Lujan, Tess Simpson and Mary Foster. The Rams scratched almost 20 second from their season-best relay and ended up in ninth place at 7:37.12.
“J-Lamb coming in with the 400 IM, then swimming the 200 free,” Woodard said. “That was a great, great show of endurance and attitude. Then coming back tonight in the 800 free relay. She was great and tough in all of the events. She goes kind of beyond what I expected at this point.”
The divers earned 37 points in the 1-meter event, the most points for CSU in a single event Friday. Shayna Solomon placed third with a score of 256.25. Freshman Mary Kate Hardy continued her impressive performance so far at the invite with a score of 228.10, landing herself in seventh place. Junior Madeline Mitchell found herself nine points and a ninth-place finish with a score of 192.05.
“I think they’re doing pretty well,” diving coach Kevin Witt said. “They’ve been competing and making it back for the finals. Generally they’re doing better in the finals than in the prelims, so that’s a good sign.”
Saturday the Rams will finish out their time at the Cougar Classic Invite with Yana Garvey in the 200 Backstroke and Kim Schemahorn, Simpson and Shelley Perkins in the 100 Freestyle. Mathews has the chance for another lifetime best in the 200 Breaststroke. Lujan and Fran Mathias will compete in the 200 Butterfly. Lamb will take on the 1650 Freestyle, arguably her best event. The divers will continue their fight in platform diving.
“We’ve got tower tomorrow,” Witt said. “Madeline Mitchell has a good chance to do well. That’s her strongest event. She’s excited about being able to compete in that event again because we don’t get many opportunities to participate in that event.”
“They’ve shown a lot of heart and a lot of determination,” Woodard said. “But they missed a few spots today. I’m just hoping they will come back tomorrow and give it a great effort.”