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Swimming & Diving Prepared For Season
Posted: Friday, October 13, 2006
EAU CLAIRE - The UW-Eau Claire men's and women's swimming and diving teams are ready to kick off the 2006-07 season under first-year head coach Jerry Kollross with tomorrow's Midwest Coed Relays in the McPhee Pool.
The women return from a season in which they went 4-2 in dual meets and 2-2 in Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (WIAC) dual meets. The team wrapped up competition with a third-place showing in the conference championships. They put up 545 points and have finished third for three straight years. In invites, the highest the team took was second out of nine at Lawrence University's Gene Davis Invitational.
The biggest hit the women took was the loss of Cori Severson. The standout from last year's squad, Severson was the only Blugold to go to nationals, where she claimed 11th in the 50-yard freestyle and failed to qualify for the finals in the 100-yard freestyle.
However, the team returns some strong swimmers and divers from last year. Diver Chelsea Moore (So.-Plymouth, MN/St. Louis Park) was the team's best diver in three of the four categories. Emmie Lee (Jr.-Zimmerman, MN/Elk River) owned two categories for fastest time. Others at the top of the team marks include Amanda Kroger (Jr.-Shoreview, MN/Mounds View), Emily Viau (Sr.-Apple Valley, MN/Eastview), Becca Riek (Jr.-Sussex/Wisconsin Lutheran) and Sarah Fisher (Jr.-Milton).
There will be a lot of youth added to the Blugolds. Of the 34 women, 13 are freshman. There are 15 upperclassmen to add experience, however.
On the men's side, the team looks to build off a .500 year in overall dual meets (3-3) and WIAC dual meets (2-2). Like the women, the men's team placed third at the WIAC Championships, nabbing 526 points. It is the fourth year in a row the Blugolds have taken third.
The biggest loss to this year's squad is Scott Heatwole, who was named WIAC Diver of the Meet at the championships the past two years.
Most of the team's leaders from last season are returning, however. Cale Schmidt-Jackson (Sr.-Duluth, MN/East) was tops for the team in three different events as was Patrick Finley (So.-Waunakee). Members of the team that were fastest in two include Peter Schultz (So.-Oakdale, MN/North) and Brian Jordan (Jr.-Madison/West). Nick Peterson (Sr.-Lake Elmo, MN/North St. Paul) also held a best time for Eau Claire last season.
There are two sets of brothers on the team. Peter and Matt Schultz (Fr.-Oakdale, MN/North) make up the Schultz boys while the Petersons are represented even stronger with three siblings. Nick will be teaming up with younger brothers Bill Peterson (So.-Lake Elmo, MN/North St. Paul) and Joseph Peterson (Fr.-Lake Elmo, MN/North St. Paul).
The men and women will work together in the first event of the year, the Midwest Coed Relays. The season opener is slated to start at 10:00 a.m. tomorrow.