Air Force Concludes Opening Day at MWC Championships
Feb. 24, 2010
OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. - Led by senior diver Kyle Van Valkenburg (Tucson, Ariz.), the Air Force men's and women's swimming and diving teams wrapped up the opening day of competition at the 2010 Mountain West Conference Championships. The men currently sit in fifth place in the team standings with 71 points, while the women are in ninth place with 18 points. BYU leads in both the men's and women's standings after six events.
Van Valkenburg scored a runner-up finish on the men's 3-meter springboard, registering a career-high mark of 373.20. Also reaching the finals was classmate David Arlington (Eagle River, Alaska), who recorded a score of 327.05 in the preliminaries before placing eighth overall.
Advancing to the consolation finals of the men's 3-meter event for the Falcons were Beau Riebe (Fr., Mercer Island, Wash.) and Jesse Bicknell (So., Westtown, N.Y.). Riebe notched a score of 311.65 in the consolation finals, placing 11th, while Bicknell posted a mark of 281.70 to take 12th place.
Meanwhile, the Falcons scored a third-place finish in the men's 200 medley relay, as the team of Benjamin Gunn (Jr., Gainesville, Ga.), Cody Deacon (So., Portland, Ore.), Chris Morin (Sr., Crown Point, Ind.) and Robert Dawson (Jr., Colorado Springs, Colo.) clocked an NCAA `B' mark of 1:29.46. The season-best time is the second-fastest in school history.
The Falcons were on pace to reach an NCAA `B' standard in the men's 800 freestyle relay, but suffered a disqualification in the event.
On the women's side, the team of Katelyn Hunter (Sr., La Crescent, Minn.), Katrina Castellanos (Fr., Roseville, Calif.), Haley Holcombe (Fr., Snellville, Ga.) and Cassie Fletcher (So., Durham, N.C.) clocked a season-best mark of 1:46.52 to finish ninth in the 200 medley relay. However, the Falcons were disqualified in the women's 800 free relay as well.
In the women's 1-meter springboard event, senior Chelsea Tompkins (Grand Junction, Colo.) finished 21st overall with a score of 197.20.
Day two of the MWC Championships begins tomorrow with the men's 1-meter springboard and men's and women's 500 freestyle preliminaries at 10:00 a.m. (CT). The finals competition is slated to start at 6:00 p.m.