Bronco Swimming and Diving Heads to Missouri Invitational

BOISE, Idaho- Boise State swimming and diving enters its final weekend of competition before more than a month dedicated to winter training. The Broncos travel to Columbia, Mo., to take part in the Missouri Invitational for the second-consecutive year.

Boise State (7-0) will take a break from dual-meet competition to compete against a variety of opponents in a championship-style settingbeginning Friday, Dec. 3 and running through  Sunday, Dec. 5.

"This meet is essentially the same format as the WAC and NCAA Championships," said head coach Kristin HIll. "Having the opportunity to experience this setting in Decmber is invaluable."

The Broncos return to the Missouri Invitational for the second-consecutive year. Joining Boise State this weekend will be the host Tigers, Nebraska, Drury and Truman State.

"The event gives us a chance to compete against teams we don't typically see," Hill said. "It will be good preparation for the challenges we will face at conference. I like that we have no preconceived ideas about who we are going to see, the girls will just get out there and push themselves. Head-to-head competition is always what we're looking for."

See page 3 of the full release for the meet schedule.

About the Broncos: Off to a perfect 7-0 start in dual meets this season, the 2010-11 Broncos already stand alone with the second-best single-season win total. Boise State won 14 dual meets in 2009-10, en route to claiming the Western Athletic Conference Championship. After rewriting the record books last season, the Bronco swimmers have already notched 13 top-10 times this year. Boise State divers have placed three scores on top-10 lists.

Last Time Out: Boise State swimmers and divers split up for the most recent competition. The divers spent Nov. 19-21, in Tucson, Ariz., at the Wildcat Diving Invitational.Freshman Ciera Cortney led the Bronco divers in the one- and three-meter competitions, placing 27th overall each of the first two days. Redshirt junior Amanda Burnett was the top performer in the platform event on the meet's final day, posting a school record score and placing third overall. Burnett's 211.80 made her the first Boise State diver to eclipse 200 points on the platform, and broke her own school record from the 2010 WAC Championships.

Boise State swimmers used 1-2-3 sweeps in the final two individual events to claim a team victory against Western Athletic Conference rival Northern Arizona in the closest traditional dual meet in school history, 162-138, in Flagstaff, Ariz. The Broncos took first place in nine of the 14 swimming events. Juniors Amber Boucher and Stephanie North each grabbed two individual victories and helped both relay sqauds to wins. Sophomore Christine Raininger led a Bronco sweep in the 200-meter individual medley to wrap up the win against the Lumberjacks.

About the Missouri Invitational: The University of Missouri swimming and diving program will host its third annual Missouri Invitational Friday, Dec. 3 through Sunday, Dec. 5. The three-day event will feature five women's teams and four men's teams. Championships scoring will be used throughout the meet as swimmers may score in up to six individual events and all relays.

Mizzou Aquatic Center is a world-class facility opened in 2005. The venue has played host to Speedo Sectional Championships, USA Swimming Grand Prix Meets and Big 12 Conference Championships. The pool is a 50-meter, eight-lane competition pool divided by bulkeads into two 25-yard courses. It features spectator seating for more than 1,000 and two full-read video boards.

"It is one of the top facilities in the U.S.," Hill said. "It gives us the best opportunity to swim fast this time of the year."

Scouting the Field: The Broncos will face one new opponent and three familiar teams this weekend. Returning to the Missouri Invitational from last season will be the host Tigers, Nebraska and Drury. New to the fold this season is Truman.

Missouri (3-2) finished third at last season's Big 12 Conference Championships. The Tigers advanced three swimmers and five divers to the 2010 NCAA Championships, finishing the season ranked No. 21 in the nation.

The Cornhuskers (4-2) finished sixth at the 2010 Big 12 Conference Championships. Nebraska sent one swimmer to the NCAA Championships last season.

Drury (2-1) is the defending NCAA Division II National Champion. The Panthers have placed third or better at the NCAA-II Championships each of 16 years they have competed at that level. Junior Yuan Qing Li is the reining National Swimmer of the Year.

Truman State (2-2) is another NCAA Division II power, having won seven national titles in the past decade. The Bulldogs finished fifth at the NCAA-II Championships last season.

Boise State at the Mizzou Invite: The Broncos return to Columbia, Mo., after placing fourth out of eight teams last season at the Missouri Invitational. Then-sophomore Stephanie North highighted the individual performances as she became the first Bronco swimmer to earn an NCAA 'B' Cut in winning the 100-yard freestyle. Her time of 50.06 bested her previous school record, and she has since bettered the mark again. She also finished fifth in the 200-yard freestyle and eighth in th 50-yard feestyle to earn WAC Swimmer of the Week honors.

Boise State at Invitational Meets: Prior to the 2009 Missouri Invitational, the Broncos had appeared at four invitational meets. Twice the Broncos traveled to Seattle for the Husky Invitational, and twice they ventured to the UC Irvine Invitational. In the program's first two years it competed in Irvine, placing third the second time around. In the first trip to the Husky Invitational, hosted by Washington, Boise State took 10th in 2007-08. A year later, the Broncos improved to sixth.

Broncos in Missouri: The only time Boise State swam in the state of Missouri, previously, was last season's Missouri Invitational. Despite the limited appearances in The Show-Me State, the Broncos boast strong ties to Missouri. Freshman Olivia Harrell is a Springfield, Mo., native. Assistant swimming coach Justin Brosseau also hails from the Springfield area and swam for three years at Truman State in Kirksville, Mo., before graduating from Missouri State. He began his coaching career with numerous club teams in Missouri, before assisting at Drury in Springfield. Head diving coach David Legler is a native of Missouri, too. Legler grew up in Blue Springs, Mo., and led Blue Springs High School to a Missouri State Championship before going on to dive at Indiana.

For more information about Boise State swimming and diving, please see the complete release.

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