Jan. 26, 2008
USAFA, Colo. - In the final home meet of the season, the Air Force men's and women's swimming and diving teams split against Utah Saturday afternoon at Cadet Natatorium. The men captured a 167-131 decision over the Utes, while the women dropped a 174-118 contest. The men move to 4-6 on the season, 1-3 in the MWC, while the women fall to 2-10, 0-7 in the conference.
The men's swimmers captured eight first-place finishes on the day and 20 spots in the top three. The Falcons finished first and second in the 200 medley relay, with the team of Kai Yamashiro (Jr., Kaneohe, Hawaii), Justin Day (Jr., Peyton, Colo.), Chris Morin (So., Crown Point, Ind.) and T.J. Cowling (Sr., Newport News, Va.) leading the way with a mark of 1:33.56. Air Force also took second and third place in the 400 freestyle relay.
Junior Bryan Avery (Mililani, Hawaii) registered a pair of first-place finishes, coming in first in both the 200 free and 100 fly, while also registering a second-place showing in the 100 free. Yamashiro also notched a pair of individual victories, winning both the 100 and 200 backstroke events, improving upon his season-best in the 100 back with a mark of 51.43.
Day turned in a dominating performance in the 100 breaststroke, finishing at 56.54, more than three seconds ahead of his nearest competitor, while finishing second in the 200 breast, behind teammate Spencer Butt (Jr., Sterling, Va.). Also finishing first for the Falcons was Cowling, winning the 50 free in his final home meet, while also finishing third in the 100 free.
Sophomore Sean O'Keefe (Lake Oswego, Ore.) placed second in both the 500 and 1000 freestyle events, while freshman Tom Hansen (Berkeley Heights, N.J.) finished third in the 1000 free. Benjamin Gunn (Fr., Gainesville, Ga.) recorded three third-place finishes, coming in third in the 100 fly, as well as the 100 and 200 back. Freshman Robert Dawson (Colorado Springs, Colo.) took third in the 50 free, while junior Nick Dixon (Canton, Mich.) took third in the 200 butterfly.
For the divers, Kyle Van Valkenburg (So., Tucson, Ariz.) swept both diving events for the second time this week. After scoring a 259.58 in the 3-meter dive, Van Valkenburg finished first in the 1-meter dive as well with a season-best mark of 305.10. Meanwhile, David Arlington (So., Eagle River, Alaska) and Randy Rogers (Jr., Fort Worth, Texas) finished second and third, respectively in the 3-meter dive, while senior Nathan Glandon (Abilene, Texas) and Rogers took second and third at 1-meter.
On the women's side, the team of Katelyn Hunter (So., La Crescent, Minn.), Jane Hwang (Jr., Irvine, Calif.), Jessica Rodgers (Fr., Colorado Springs, Colo.) and Katie Brock (Fr., Spring, Texas) recorded a season-best mark of 1:51.87 in the 200 medley relay to take second place.
The Falcons had two swimmers finish first in a pair of races each. Hwang took first place in both the 100 and 200 freestyle events, while freshman Kaeli Kluesner (Denver, Colo.) won both the 100 and 200 back, while also finishing third in the 400 IM. Kluesner's time of 1:01.44 in the 100 back was a new personal best, as she edged out the second-place finisher by less than a tenth of a second.
Rodgers added a second-place finish in the 100 butterfly, while also taking third place in the 50 free. Four other swimmers recorded third-place showings for the Falcons, including Caitlin Teresky (Fr., Newtown, Pa.) in the 1000 free, Becky Gleason (So., Ballwin, Mo.) in the 200 fly, Solange Eddy (So., Denver, Colo.) in the 200 breast and Betsy Scarberry (Fr., Fairborn, Ohio) in the 500 free.
Junior Ashleigh Peck (Beaver Falls, Pa.) led the women's divers with a second-place showing at 1-meter, recording a season-best 268.28, while senior Danielle Dowds (Huntington Beach, Calif.) took third in the 3-meter dive.
The Falcon swimmers are off next week, while the divers host the Air Force Diving Invitational, Feb. 1-2, at the Cadet Natatorium.