Bronco 200 FR Earns All-America Status
March 16, 2017

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    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. - Boise State's 200 free relay team of Brittany Aoyama, Abbey Sorensen, Katelyn Martin and Ally Kleinsorgen finished 12th in the Consolation Final of the NCAA Swimming and Diving Championships Thursday to earn 10 team points and All-America honorable mention.

    The finish is the highest in program history by a relay, and is just the third time that Boise State has made the team scoreboard at the national meet. The 200 free relay of Amber Boucher, Stevie Hughey, Sydney Johansen and Stephanie North scored with a 16th-place finish in 2012.

    Boise State, with 10 points, is 25th in the team standings after Day Two of the NCAA Championships.

    "I am continually amazed by the grit and determination of our swimmers. Every time I think they've reached their limit they find a way to push forward. It is impressive and fun to watch," said Boise State head coach Jeremy Kipp. "Points are really, really hard to come by at the NCAA Championships. It's an impressive list of schools that come close and don't [score], so you have to fight for each point. To sweep the five relays at conference, then come here and score, it put an exclamation point on our season. To come in here and score, get All-America status, it's good for the program and for the conference."

    Aoyama, Sorensen, Martin and Kleinsorgen finished 13th in Thursday morning's prelims with a school-record time of 1:28.31 to earn their spot in the evening's Consolation Final. There, the quartet clocked a 1:28.31, finishing 13th before being elevated to 12th after Tennessee was disqualified in the same race.

    Tennessee's time of 1:28.07 topped the field, but the Lady Volunteers were disqualified, elevating Texas A&M (1:27.78) into ninth place overall. Boise State finished just three-hundredths of a second behind USC (1:28.35) and seven-hundredths of a second behind Texas (1:28.31) in the evening race.

    Aoyama, Martin (50 free) and Emma Chard (500 free) were also in action in individual events Thursday morning. Martin finished just 0.15 of a second out of the Consolation Final, clocking a 22.15 to finish 19th in prelims. Aoyama touched the pad in 22.32 in her heat, finishing 27th overall.

    "Katelyn's performance was was tremendous. She had never qualified for NCAAs individually, and to come in seeded 27th and finish 19th was great for her," Kipp said. "By almost hitting her time [from conference championships] in this event, with a field that is so tight and with so much nerves and pressure, it speaks volumes to Katelyn's growth as athlete and person. And Brit never qualified in the 50, either, and she comes in and moves up. It gives her confidence going into the 100 fly tomorrow."

    Chard finished 50th in qualifying in the 500 free, clocking a time of 4:45.16.

    The Broncos were entered in the 400 medley relay as well, but scratched the event.

    Boise State continues competition at the NCAA Championships Friday, with prelims beginning at 8 a.m. The Broncos are scheduled to compete in the 200 medley relay, along with Aoyama and Martin entered in the 100 fly and Chard in the 200 free.

    "[Scoring points] takes some of the pressure off of our swimmers. They realize they can compete, and we're swimming like we belong here now," Kipp noted.

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