SDSU swim and dive finishes 6th at Art Adamson Inivitational

by Joseph Faria, Staff Writer

The San Diego State women’s swim team placed sixth at the Art Adamson Invitational in College Station, Texas, this past weekend.

The three-day meet (Nov. 19-21) was hosted by Texas A&M, and the Aztecs ended with 243 points to finish just behind University of Utah in the 10-team meet.

Notable top finishes for the Aztecs included the 200-yard freestyle relay where the foursome of senior Taylor Johnson, freshman Cailey Steffens, senior Savannah Miller and senior Whitney Weisz captured third place with a time of 1:30.32. That mark is the third-fastest in program history.

Then in the 400-yard freestyle relay, Johnson, Miller, junior Samantha Guttmacher and Weisz had the seventh-fastest all-time mark for an SDSU relay with a time of 3:20.26.

Johnson also turned in a personal best of 22.54 seconds to take second in the consolation final (10th overall) in the 50-yard freestyle. Her time is the third-fastest ever by an SDSU swimmer in the event.

Miller’s time of 49.85 seconds in the 100-yard freestyle ties for the fifth-fastest mark in program history. Junior Taylor Young had a time of 2:12.58 in the 200-yard breaststroke, the third-best time ever for an SDSU swimmer. Freshman Rachel Kelch had the eighth-best time in program history in the 200-yard backstroke (1:59.35).

And if that wasn’t enough, sophomore Summer Harrison set an Aztec school record with a time of 1:58.01 in the 200-yard butterfly while finishing first.

“Like I’ve said time and time again, I love coaching this team,” head coach Mike Shrader said. “They’re a bunch of competitors and have excellent effort and attitude.”

The Aztecs swam against their toughest competition yet, facing No. 3 Texas A&M, No. 9 Stanford University, No. 28 LSU, No. 45 Boise State and No. 48 Arizona State. SDSU is ranked No. 44 in the nation.

“We’ve been a strong team this year,” Shrader said. “(But) we have more work to do so we can reach our goal of making the Mountain West Championships again and the 2016 NCAA Championships. That’s what we’re all focused on.”

The Aztecs finished behind first and second place winners, Texas A&M (1166 points) and Stanford (833 points), as well as third and fourth place finishers, LSU (572.5 points) and Boise State (340.5 points). They did finish ahead of eighth-place Arizona State (130 points).

“I think this Texas Invitational was a step forward for us overall,” Shrader said. “We saw some of the best swimmers in the country this weekend and we answered and rose to the occasion.”

The invitational also gave the athletes an opportunity to make Olympic trial cuts. There were separate events held for that purpose. Notably, Harrison delivered and qualified for the Olympic games. Weisz also swam and was just shy of qualifying.

“I was so impressed with what Summer and Whitney did in their events,” Shrader said. “I was equally impressed with the way Taylor (Johnson), Savannah and Taylor (Young) competed. They all had an exceptional weekend and I know they will continue to get better.”

The Aztecs will be looking to stay on pace to reach their championship aspirations in their next meet at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo on Dec. 18.

In addition to the Texas Invitational this weekend, the SDSU diving team competed at the Wildcat Diving Invitational at the University of Arizona in Tucson.  Sophomore Alexandra Caplan finished highest for the Aztecs with a total of 200.05 points.