Rebels Claim Runner-Up Honors At MWC Championships
March 1, 2008
OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. - The UNLV men's swimming and diving team cruised to its fourth straight Mountain West Conference title, as the Rebels won four events on the final day to easily top second place BYU by 157.5 points. UNLV would finish the four-day meet winning a total of 14 of 21 events, while setting four new MWC records as well. On the women's side, UNLV earned team runner-up honors by scoring 622 points, and also won three events on the final day. The Rebel women also posted five new league records over the championship meet.
Richard Hortness became the fourth Rebel all-time to be named MWC Men's Swimmer of the Year, as he won his third individual event of the championships by taking the 100 free title. After setting a new MWC record in the morning preliminaries in a time of 43.61, he came back to post a time of 43.52 in the finals at night, breaking his own record and earning a NCAA 'B' time. Hortness also swam on four first-place relays over the meet as well. Jim Reitz was also named MWC Men's Coach of the Year for the fifth time in his career, while Johan Claar picked up the men's Senior Recognition Award.
UNLV began the night by dominating the 1650 free, where the Rebels posted a 1-2-3 finish. Kier Maitland, the MWC record holder, won in a time of 15:14.31, while teammate Claar was second in 15:16.46, and John Mendoza took third in 15:20.88. All three were NCAA 'B' times.
In the next event, Tiger Christian won his second event of the championships by winning the 200 back in 1:46.49, a NCAA 'B' time, while Devin Phillips took second in 1:47.27. Jeff Ellingsen was also in the top-eight, sixth in 1:49.35. Two Rebels joined Hortness in scoring in the 100 free, as Calan Eldridge was 10th (45.38) and Thomas Andolfsson took 16th (46.85).
Jonas Anderson set his second MWC record of the meet by winning the 200 breast in a NCAA 'A' automatic time of 1:57.03. Tamas Bosnyak finished 11th (2:04.56) and Corban Fleming took 13th (2:05.08). In the last individual event, Daniel Egly took runner-up honors in the 200 fly (1:48.03), a NCAA 'B' time, while Peter Lorring was fifth in 1:49.90.
In the final event of the night, the Rebels three-year win streak in the 400 free was snapped, as they lost to TCU by just .10 seconds. UNLV would take second, as Hortness, Bosnyak, Eldridge, and Claar swam a time of 2:58.26, an NCAA 'B' time.
The team standings for the men's side finished with UNLV in first at 800, BYU in second (642.5), and those teams were followed by Wyoming (629), Air Force (531), TCU (472), and Utah (352.5).
On the women's side, Kim Bonney became the third Rebel to be named MWC Women's Swimmer of the Year, as she also won three individual events for the meet, finishing off with a first-place victory in the 200 breast. After setting a new MWC record time in the morning preliminaries in 2:14.15, which was also a NCAA 'A' time, she broke the record again at night with a time of 2:13.95. Bonney also was awarded the women's Senior Recognition Award.
In the 1650 free, Lara Sreibers was the lone Rebel to score, as she was 15th in 17:39.78.
UNLV completed a 1-2-3 finish in the 200 back, as Amanda Weinbrecht was first in a NCAA 'B' time of 1:59.46. Ana Dangalakova was second (2:01.28), while Lisa Gillespie took third (2:01.50). Three Rebels also swam in the finals of the 100 free, as Megan Hunt-Higgins claimed second in 49.85, while Marina Sandback was third in 50.25 and Marva Harpak took seventh in 51.15. Madison Rousell also scored in the 100 free, finishing 14th in 52.23.
Joining Bonney in scoring in the 200 breast was Kelsey Clarke, eighth in 2:22.16, while Bailey Kuestermeyer took 15th in 2:23.42. Jenna Neff was eighth in the 200 fly (2:07.84), while Wendy Williams placed 14th on the platform with a score of 178.75.
In the night's final event, UNLV's 400 free relay team of Hunt-Higgins, Bonney, Harpak, and Sandback set the final new conference record of the night, winning in a time of 3:21.27.
The final scores for the women saw BYU in first (763), UNLV second (622), with Utah third (579), Wyoming fourth (574.5), Colorado State fifth (359), TCU sixth (276.5), New Mexico seventh (262), San Diego State eighth (161), and Air Force ninth (151).
Next up for both UNLV teams will be the 2008 NCAA Championships. This year's NCAA Women's Championships will be held in Columbus, Ohio, from March 20-22. The NCAA Men's Championships will be the next weekend, March 27-29 in Federal Way, Wash.