Aztecs triumphant over Nevada and Washington State in dual meet


Sam Mayo

SDSU senior Rachael Kelch competes during a dual meet against Nevada and Washington State on Sept. 21 at the Aztec Aquaplex.

by Kyle Betz, Staff Writer

San Diego State swim and dive won its first double dual meet of the season at the Aztec Aquaplex on Sept. 21, outscoring Nevada and Washington State by a score of 158-142-134, respectively.

The victory was SDSU’s second meet win of the season, following its win over the University of San Diego in the Aztecs annual pentathlon on Sept. 14.

Head coach Mike Shrader said he noticed improvement following the pentathlon and the team’s first full week of training.

“We were better than we were last time out,” Shrader said. “We got some good, tough training this week, and I was really happy with the way we competed.”

SDSU placed first in six of ten relay events and was led by junior swimmer Alma Thormalm, who was a part of the winning relay teams in the 150-yard fly (1:16.43), 150-yard back (1:17.73) and 200-yard free (1:36.75).

The Aztecs also claimed first place in the 150-yard breast (1:30.34), 500-yard free (4:30.97) and 1500-yard free (15:18.63).

Freshmen swimmers had a significant impact for SDSU, as Cathy Cooper and Mia Ryan helped SDSU’s A-team win the 500-yard free.

Shrader said facing a fellow Mountain West opponent and a Pac-12 team brought an extra level of competitiveness.

“Anytime you’re facing somebody in your conference that you’ll see (later on), that’s always great to compete against them and see where you are,” he said. “Having the Cougars down from Pullman was really nice.”

Sophomore swimmer Larisa Tam had the third-fastest time in the 150-yard breast at 29.93 and swam in six different relays.

Tam said that the one of the most difficult aspects of a relay meet is its fast pace.

“You’re one after another, you’re going all out, and then you have to get back up, do another (race) again,” Tam said.

Sophomore swimmer Ava Howard swam behind Tam in the 200-yard free, helping SDSU’s B-team earn a third place finish at 1:38.60.

Howard said that although the Aztecs won, the team faced adversity throughout the meet.

“I know a lot of people swam things they don’t typically swim, so that was a little hard,” Howard said. “We all kind of pushed through and we ended up winning.”

SDSU will head to Malibu, Calif. on Oct. 4 to face Pepperdine in a dual meet, before traveling to Fresno to participate in the Fresno Invitational from Oct. 5-6.

Howard said the team will be able to continue having success in future meets as long as they stay focused.

“I think just keeping up our training, what we’re doing now and just keeping our focus will help us in the future,” she said.