SAN ANTONIO, Texas - There seems to be no stopping the Boise State swimming & diving team as they continue to make a splash at the Western Athletic Conference Championships with record breaking times, Thursday.
The Broncos got off to an amazing start during the morning preliminaries as nearly every individual set personal best times in addition to recording school records in each of the events. However, little did Boise State know that those records would not last through the night, as seven individuals qualified to compete in the finals.
“Wow! We had faster times tonight in every single event we swam from start to finish,” said head coach Kristin Hill. “Nathalie Rohling’s 500 freestyle got the night started and everyone continued to swim up from there.”
The finals began with the 500 freestyle which showcased the talents of freshmen Rohling and Rachael Meisner. Meisner, who recorded a personal best time of 5:04.01 during the preliminaries to qualify for the A Finals, placed fourth in the event with a record time of 5:02.51.
Not to be overshadowed was Rohling as she clocked a personal best time of 5:04.77 to take first in the C finals, knocking five seconds off her previous best time (5:09.48) that was set during the morning preliminaries.
The 200 individual medley featured a quartette of Broncos with Kim Nelson and Andrea Thiltgen competing in the C Finals, while Tara Hahto and Allison Hall competed in the B Finals. During the first heat, Nelson led the way as she recorded a personal best of 2:11.52 for fifth place, while teammate Thiltgen took eighth with a time of 2:21.52.
Making her presence known during the B Finals of the 200 IM was Hahto as the freshman took second in the event with a record time of 2:08.97, outreaching teammate Hall who finished third after recording lifetime best time of 2:09.83.
Continuing the record breaking streak for Boise State was Johanna Wubbena, who was the only Bronco to compete in the 50 free. The freshman not only took first in the C Finals with a time of 24.35 but set both a personal best and ranks first in the Bronco record books.
The final event of the evening was the 200 free relay where the Broncos clocked a time of 1:37.74 (Jenny Nowatzke, Wubbena, Rohling, Denise Green). Despite a seventh place finish, the time sets a new school record, beating the previous record by nearly two seconds.
“Rachael’s 4th place finish in the 500 freestyle was outstanding and impressive for a freshman from any program, let alone a second year program,” added Hill.
“Tara and Allie both swam lifetime bests in the 200 IM and moved up from this morning to score good team points. Our 200 freestyle relay was nearly 2 seconds faster than any previous time at Boise State and set yet another team record.”
Earlier in the afternoon, the Boise State diving team took to the boards for the 1-meter preliminaries, where senior Jennifer Dorling led the way for the Broncos with a score of 178.90. Freshman Megan Morton finished directly behind Dorling with a score of 176.30, while teammate Alyssa Daly tallied a score of 157.20.
At the end of day two, the Broncos have tallied 98 points and sit in sixth place, four points ahead of rival Idaho.
“We are really anticipating a great morning tomorrow and look forward to more fast swimming over the next two days,” Hill concluded.
The Broncos now prepare for the third day of competition which will feature the 400 IM, 100 butterfly, 200 free, 100 breaststroke, 100 backstroke, 3-meter diving and finish with the 400 medley relay. The preliminaries will begin at 11 a.m., with the finals starting at 6:30 p.m.
Live results are available at www.wacsports.com.
Ashley Cecil, 5:22.93*
LiAnne Choitz, 5:19.60*
Samantha Eichner, 5:19.36*
Kelly Knapp, 5:38.55*
Rachael Meisner, 5:02.51 (school record)
Nathalie Rohling, 5:04.77 (ranks third in the Boise State record books)
Erin Stotts, 5:32.30*
Holly Chatelain, 2:19.24*
Erica Christianson, 2:12.39*
Tara Hahto, 2:08.97 (school record)
Allison Hall, 2:09.83 (ranks fourth in the Boise State record books)
Lauren Keele, 2:12.33* (ranks tenth in the Boise State record books)
Kim Nelson, 2:11.52 (ranks seventh in the Boise State record books)
Andrea Thiltgen, 2:11.65* (ranks sixth in the Boise State record books)
Danielle Blow, 25.67*
Morgan Denny, 25.43*
Denise Green, 24.82* (ranks fourth in the Boise State record books)
Johanna Wubbena, 24.35 (school record)
* - Indicates preliminary time