COLORADO SPRINGS -- The 2010 Mountain West Conference Swimming & Diving Championships begin Wednesday, Feb. 24. Live stats will be available online by clicking HERE.
For the 11th consecutive year, the Oklahoma City Community College Aquatic Center in Oklahoma City, Okla., will serve as the host site for the MWC Championships, which will run from Wednesday, February 24 through Saturday, February 27, 2010.
TCU enters the championship meet coming off its first-ever MWC regular-season crown after posting perfect 5-0 Conference dual meet record. The Horned Frogs finished the regular season at 7-0 to mark the first undefeated season in program history. Sophomore Edgar Crespo, who was named Mountain West Swimmer of the Week twice during the 2009-10 season, will lead the Frogs individually, as he holds the Conference's top time in the 200-yard breaststroke (55.60). UNLV seeks to defend its 2009 MWC Championship, and is currently ranked No. 22 in the latest College Swim Coaches Association of America (CSCAA) Top 25 Coaches' Poll. The Rebels will be led by Thomas Andolfsson, Nick Blank, Tyler Bush, Kier Maitland, and David Seiler, who combined to win seven of UNLV's 10 individual titles at the 2009 Championship.
In men's diving, BYU sophomore Brandon Watson holds the MWC's season-best scores in both springboard events with marks of 402.98 (3-meter) and 371.40 (1-meter), respectively. Fellow Cougar Ron Morris looks to defend the 1-meter springboard crown that he won in 2009, while Air Force senior Kyle Van Valkenburg seeks a second-consecutive title in the platform event. Other men's divers looking to bring home individual crowns are Air Force's David Arlington, TCU's Kyle Callens, and the Wyoming duo of Kyle Bogner and Mark Murdock.
On the women's side, BYU finished 8-0 in Conference dual meets to bring home the Cougars' third straight regular-season crown. The Cougars will be led by senior Natasha Menezes, who in 2009 won the 500-yard freestyle with an MWC Championship record time of 4:47.83 and the 1650-yard freestyle in 16:30.20, which ranks as the top time in league history. BYU will be challenged by San Diego State, who owns MWC season-best times in eight individual events and three relays. The Aztecs will be led by freshman Leona Jennings, who is the league's top-time holder this season in the 100-yard backstroke (54.22), the 200-yard backstroke (1:57.57), and the 200-yard individual medley (2:01.04).
New Mexico sophomore Ashlee Erickson ranks first in MWC history on the 1-meter springboard with a mark of 337.20. Meanwhile, BYU senior Tawni Jones, who swept all three diving events at the 2008 MWC Championships, ranks first on the 3-meter board at 333.68. BYU's Ava Jackman, Utah's Kwan Ling Yu and Wyoming's Stephanie Ortiz will also provide close competition this year, as they return as the 2009 champions in the 1-meter springboard, platform, and 3-meter springboard, respectively.
At least year's Conference meet, 28 championship records were broken, including 11 women's and 10 men's all-time MWC records. UNLV swept all 10 relay events and won 10 individual titles to total 888 points overall en route to the Rebels' fifth consecutive men's team crown. On the women's side, BYU tallied 643 points, including five individual titles and four relay victories, to win the Cougars' fourth straight championship.