Juniors Jorge Azevedo and Brett Allen set records Saturday, leading the Cougars to a third-place finish. (Photo by Mark Philbrick/BYU Photo)
LONG BEACH -- BYU's Jorge Azevedo set a current national- and school-best time of 47.70 in the 100 fly, leading the men's swimming team to a third-place finish Saturday at the annual Speedo Cup Invitational in Long Beach, Calif. Last week's MWC Swimmer of the Week Brett Allen followed in sync, marking the fourth best time in the country in the 50 free at 19.91 and setting another Cougar record.
"These guys times are as close to automatically making it to the NCAA's as possible," said men's swimming coach Tim Powers. "The team is looking great and we're just getting faster."
The men brought in ten top-five finishes on the weekend along with an additional six top-ten. Freshman John Kendrick added to the Cougar scoreboard taking third in the 1650 free at 15:50.11 and fifth in the 500 free at 4:31.08. Allen also brought in a third-place time of 44.76 in the 100 free, just .30 seconds behind second place.
The women also finished third, racking up points across the board with 14 top-ten finishes including a fifth place in the 200 and 400 free relays and the 400 medley relay. This week's MWC Swimmer of the Week, freshman Leilani Roberts, had the highest finish on the weekend for the women taking third in the 100 free at 51.54. Senior Natasha Jones contributed with a fifth-place finish in the 200 back at 2:04.03, while sophomore Jamie Bloom came in fifth at 1:06.67 in the 100 breast. Sophomores Tara Bradshaw and Angela Goodson added two sixth-place finishes in the 400 IM at 4:32.49 and the 100 fly at 57.47, respectively.
"A third-place finish doesn't diminish the fact that we had a solid meet all around," said women's swimming coach Stan Crump. " There were a lot of good things happening out there this weekend and I'm proud of the girls' performance."
Back at home the divers hosted and dominated the BYU Diving Invitational with sophomore Ron Morris taking first in all of the men's events and sophomore Angela Nelson taking first in all of the women's.
"It was good competition and I saw some good diving," said diving coach Keith Russell. "And the divers keep on learning, and that will just make us better."
The Cougars will have the remainder of November and December off from competition. MWC contest will pick up Jan. 4 when the men host Washington at home.
(Full results from the Speedo Cup Invitational can be accessed by going to http://www.swim.uci.edu/2005speedocup.html.)