Boise State Finishes Second At MWs
Feb. 21, 2015
SAN ANTONIO - Boise State finished second at the Mountain West Swimming & Diving Championships Sunday night, but ended the meet on a high note as the quartet of Brittany Aoyama, Sam Wicks, Katelyn Martin and Jessica Bottelberghe captured the finale, the 400 free relay, in a school-record 3:16.88.
The Broncos ended the meet with three titles (400 free relay, 800 free relay, 100 fly), its most since winning 10 in 2012, and 679.5 team points. That total was second to San Diego State, which captured the conference title with 704.5 points. Nevada was third with 554 points, Wyoming (420) fourth and UNLV rounded out the top five with 312.5.
"I'm really proud of our team with the way we raced from start to finish this week," said Boise State head coach Kristin Hill. "We fought really hard today after not having our best day yesterday, so to come back with the energy and enthusiasm and will to win today was great. Being able to win that last relay, winning two relays this week, was a good way to end the competition."
In the meet's finale, the 400 free relay, the Broncos trailed San Diego State by 0.63 of a second at the halfway point. It was at this point, however, that Martin would surge past San Diego State's Taylor Johnson, making up 1.61 seconds and handing anchor Jessica Bottelberghe a lead of 0.61 of a second over second-place UNLV.
Bottelberghe wrapped her leg in 49.21 to give the Broncos a final time of 3:16.88, an NCAA Provisional Standard and Boise State record. The new record eclipsed the old mark of 3:17.55 set at the 2012 Mountain West Championships.
"Katelyn really swam with a lot of heart today, including in her individual race," Hill noted. "Between the two of those it was really impressive. We needed her to do exactly what she did to win that relay and she is someone that's a competitor and we appreciate that kind of heart and spirit."
The 400 free relay mark was just one of three school records set Saturday night. Senior Nikki Cannon eclipsed Devin Madsen's 2013 mark of 1:57.56 with a 1:57.46 in morning qualifying, then bettered that by more than a second with a time of 1:56.20 for a runner-up finish in the A final.
Another senior, diver Erin Kohlbeck, put her name atop the Boise State platform diving category twice as well. Kohlbeck posted a qualifying score of 271.20 to surpass Amanda Burnett's mark of 257.45 set at the Missouri Invitational in December 2011, then added to the record with a score of 274.60 in the final, taking second overall.
The Bronco diving contingent dominated the platform Saturday, as in addition to Kohlbeck's runner-up finish, sophomores Jordan Marthens (255.70) and Karli Kriewall (218.55) finished fourth and sixth, respectively, with freshman Kiley Carlson taking fifth in the consolation for an overall 13th-place finish. In total, the Bronco divers contributed 49 points to the team's score just from platform.
"It was fantastic bringing back all four divers today. Erin was fantastic in breaking the school platform record twice," said Boise State diving coach John Lynch. "Having three young divers scoring points today makes me very excited about the future of Bronco diving. I have to give a huge shoutout to Kristin and the athletic department for the investment and opportunity to travel to invites and training trips. These opportunities are the key to our success on platform."
Bottelberghe preceded her relay-clinching anchor leg with a strong third-place finish in the 200 fly, clocking a personal-best 1:58.60, which also stood as an NCAA B Cut.
Aoyama (49.37) and Wicks (49.41) took fourth and fifth, respectively, in the A final of the 100 free, with Martin (49.77) and Emma Chard (49.92) going 1-2 in the B final for eighth and ninth-place overall finishes and NCAA B Cuts.
Other top-eight finishes for the Broncos Saturday included Sydney Johansen taking eighth in the 200 back in 1:59.97, and Emri Moore finishing sixth in the 1,650 free with a time of 16:37.87, third-fastest in school history. Amelia Draney (16:51.17) took ninth, Blake Balogh (16:59.44) 14th and Megan Myers (16:59.89) 15th in the 1,650 free.
For the Bronco diving contingent, up next is the NCAA Zone E Qualifying Meet from March 9-11 in Colorado Springs, Colo. Bronco swimmers with NCAA B Cuts will find out in the coming weeks if their times qualify for the NCAA Championships, set to be held in Greensboro, N.C. March 19-21.
2015 Mountain West Championships Final Team Scoreboard
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