BYU Women Secure MWC Regular Season Title

Sophomore Aleesha Miller broke the BYU pool record in the 50 free with a time of 23.07. (Photo by Mark Philbrick/BYU Photo)

PROVO -- Even with back-to-back competition, the BYU women’s (16-1, 7-0) swimming team secured the regular season Mountain West Conference title with a 188-111 win over the Wyoming Cowgirls. The Cougar men (5-4, 3-3) fell to Wyoming 117-183, the first loss to the Cowboys in 21 years.

Sophomore Aleesha Miller broke the BYU pool record in the 50 free with a time of 23.07. The previous record was held by Amber Walter of Utah, set in 2006 (23.19).

“We had some excellent swims,” said BYU head coach Tim Powers. “Both teams swam very well. The men beat us in depth and in many events and came well prepared to face us. Our women always do well and I am very proud of them securing the regular season title.”

The men were led by Stott Bushnell, the freshman sensation, who not only won both of his events on Friday, but also won the 200 free on Saturday with a time of 1:41.38.

“Stott is an excellent swimmer,” said Powers. “He got the fans on their feet in every race he swam.”

Sophomore John Kendrick came from behind in both the 500 and 1000 free events to win both of them with respective times of 4:43.55 and 9:47.50.

BYU’s fastest sprinter, Gregor Greiner, won the 50 and 100 freestyle events with respective times of 20.90 and 45.86.

Sam Hatch battled on the boards, taking first in the 3-meter event with a score of 335.12. Hatch would be the only diver from BYU to win on the afternoon.

The 200 medley relay team of Candice Smith, Sara Jayne Christiansen, Rachel Grant and Miller started off the women’s events with a win in a time of 1:44.87.

Senior Leilani Roberts took the 200 free with a time of 1:52.07. Freshman Candice Smith won both the 100 and 200 backstroke events with respective times of 56.66 and 2:02.05.

Do-all Rachel Grant won all three of her events including the 200 fly (2:02.74), 200 IM (2:05.28) and the 100 fly (56.06). Sara Jayne Christiansen won the 200 breaststroke for the first time this season with a time of 2:23.67.

After breaking the BYU pool record in the 50 free, Miller also won the 100 free with a time of 50.87, only a tenth of a second off of the 100 free BYU pool record.

Defending MWC champion in the 500 free, Natasha Menezes won the 500 free with a time of 5:00.73.

To finish off the meet, the 400 free relay team of N. Menezes, Kirsty Ferrell, Roberts and Miller won with a time of 3:25.75.

The Cougar divers will next travel to Colorado Springs on Jan. 30-31 for the Air Force Diving Invitational, while the swimmers will take on Utah in Salt Lake City at 6:00 p.m. on Feb. 6.

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