New Year, Same Rebels
Jan. 10, 2007
LAS VEGAS -
WOMEN (2-3, 2-2 MWC) Preview: The UNLV women's swimming and diving team enter 2007 on the heels of a successful UNLV Winter Invite, in which they finished second, also defeating conference foes TCU and San Diego State in the process. The Rebels will be led by Bailey Kuestermeyer, the reigning MWC women's Swimmer of the Week. Kuestermeyer finished with four top-two finishes, including winning the 200 breast. Also look for scoring from Marina Sandback, Lani Seaman and newcomer Marva Harpak. On the boards, Wendy Williams and Caitlin Kelly will compete for the Rebels.
Scouting The Owls: The Florida Atlantic women come into this weekend's meet with the No. 4 ranking in the Division I Mid-Major poll, according to CollegiateSwimming.com. The reigning Sun Belt champs are swimming well after a sweep of Nebraska, Illinois State and Pennsylvania in a tri-dual meet. Geni Berts and Ellie Weberg both won two events on the day, while Bianca Murphy, Jenny Harms, Jennifer Forcht and Lauren Harvath all won events for the Owls. Berts is the leader for the Owls, having come off two Sun Belt championships last season in the 800 free relay and the 200 IM.
Rebel Women Finish Second At UNLV Winter Invite: UNLV competed in the UNLV Winter Invite, taking home second place, along with defeating TCU and San Diego State in points for their first and second conference wins. UCSB scored 993 to take first, with the Rebels in second with 839 points. TCU was third with 723.5 points and San Diego State closed out the top four with 434.5 points. UNLV began the night by sweeping the 1650 free, starting with Lani Seaman (16:58.08) and Marva Harpak's (17:11.65) one-two finish on the women's side. The next win for the UNLV women came in the 200 back, as Amanda Weinbrecht swam a time of 2:02.69. Bailey Kuestermeyer added the final win for the Rebel women, taking the 200 breast in 2:17.40. Kim Bonney also scored in the event, finishing fifth in 2:24.80. UNLV also placed three in the top-eight in the 100 free, as Katie Wronn and Marina Sandback both tied for fourth in 52.64, while Lauren Browning was seventh in 52.84.
#23 MEN (3-1/3-0 MWC) Preview: The UNLV men travel to Boca Raton, Fla. for their first meet of the 2007 calender year, taking on the Owls of Florida Atlantic. The Rebs are coming off a good showing in the UNLV Winter Invite, finishing second while also defeating TCU in points for a conference win. Brandon Nelms is the reigning national swimmer of the week, and will be counted on to score well for the Rebels. Others that will be important will be Richard Hortness, who has the 50th best time in the 50 free this season. Jonas Andersson currently holds the 24th best time in Division I in the 100 breast, with Johan Claar holding down the 25th best D-I time in the 1,650 free.
Scouting The Owls: The 15th-ranked Florida Atlantic Owls will look to rebound after falling to University of Pennsylvania last weekend. Jonathon Pinto won both backstroke events, as he posted a time of 53.48 in the 100, followed by a 1:55.98 in the 200 back. Other winners were Kyle DeCicco in the 100 breast (59.14), Eren Onurlu in the 50 free (21.35), Christian Baker in the 200 breast (2:13.29), Greg Corning in the 400 IM and Nick McMahon won both the 1-meter (245.35) and 3-meter (284.20) diving events. Onerlu's top time of 20.43 in the 50 free is good for 46th nationally, while DiCicco's 57.66 time in the 100 breast is the last time in the top 100.
Nelms Named MWC, National Swimmer Of The Week:
Coming off a successful UNLV Winter Invitational, it was announced on Dec. 22 that Brandon Nelms was slated as the both Collegiate Swimming.com National Men's Swimmer of the Week and Mountain West Conference Men's Swimmer of the Week. Nelms, a senior from Plano, Texas, earned six victories over the span of three days at the UNLV Winter Invitational. He won both the 50 free (20.42) and the 100 free (44.89), while combining with his relay partners for wins in the 200 and 400 free relays. He also anchored the 200 and 400 medley relays for first-place finishes this weekend. Nelms was the second Rebel swimmer honored by the Mountain West this season, as Jonas Andersson earned the award back on Dec. 6. He is also just the second UNLV swimmer ever to be awarded on the national stage, as current Rebel student assistant Joe Bartoch earned that distinction as well in 2005-06.