San Antonio, Texas------ Morgan McCormick became the first San Jose State University women's swimmer to win a Mountain West Championship with a conference record-setting performance in the 200 backstroke on the final night of four-day meet.
The freshman from Golden, Colo., posted a 1:54.13 winning time at the Palo Alto College Natatorium. The previous conference record was 1:54.40 set by Colorado State's Breann Fuller at the 2013 Mountain West Championships. McCormick finished 2.07 seconds ahead of second-place finisher Nicolette Cannon of Boise State.
"This is the cherry on top. It hasn't sunk in yet. I'm excited and I'm honored," McCormick said about her second school record and second NCAA Championship B cut in three days. Named the Mountain West Freshman of the Year at the end of the meet, McCormick finished fourth in the 200 individual medley on the second night of the conference championships.
"Morgan is very talented. We knew she had the ability and be able to deal with the pressure of her first conference meet," said San Jose State head coach Sage Hopkins. "She led her races from start to finish in the morning and in the evening."
For the third night in a row, San José State moved up one place in the team standings to finish seventh. The Spartans started the championships in tenth place.
"Without question, this was our most successful conference championship meet in school history based on overall team performance, number of individual best times, NCAA B cuts and diving," said Hopkins, who had coached the Spartans to the 2012 and 2013 Western Athletic Conference championships.
Junior Riley Spitser joined McCormick on the medal stand with her second school record of the meet, too. Spitser finished third in the 1650 freestyle in 16:32.52 to become the program's first medalist at a Mountain West Championship.
"It was hard (the race), but halfway through, I tried to think of the seniors. It helped me forget about the pain," said Spitser, who was ranging between fifth and sixth the first half of her race. "I got pretty to one of them. I could see that I gained on the first one and then I got a burst of energy."
Spitser echoed Hopkins' sentiments about the team's four-day performance.
"The team did insanely well. Almost everyone on the team had a best time (PR). This definitely is something to be happy about. This is the best meet I've been to in the three years I've been on the team," said Spitser.
2015 Mountain West Women's Swimming & Diving Championships
Palo Alto College Natatorium, San Antonio, Texas
February 21, 2015
Day 4 of 4
Team Scores - 1, San Diego State, 704.5. 2, Boise State, 679.5. 3, Nevada, 554. 4, Wyoming, 420. 5, UNLV, 312.5. 6, Air Force, 281. 7, San Jose State, 222. 8, Fresno State, 187. 9, New Mexico, 180. 10, Colorado State, 172.5.
1650 Freestyle - 1, Genevieve Miller, Air Force, 16:13.01 (Mountain West record). 2, Sara Menke, Air Force, 16:28.38. 3, Riley Spitser, San Jose State, 16:32.52. 4, Michelle Forman, Nevada, 16:34.56. 5, Nicole Hlavacek, Wyoming, 16:35.41.
200 Backstroke - 1, Morgan McCormick, San Jose State, 1:54.13 (Mountain West record). 2, Nicolette Cannon, Boise State, 1:56.20 3, Jaeger Turner, Nevada, 1:56.33. 4, Colleen Humel, San Jose State, 1:58.06. 5, Natilee Ruiz, San Diego State, 1:58.29. Other San Jose State entries - 21, Haley Smith, 2:02.08. 30, Lisa Ellis, 2:05.55. NP, Morgan Miller, x2:05.88.
100 Freestyle - 1, Anika Apostalon, San Diego State, 47.88. 2, Chelsea Bailey, San Diego State, 49.06. 3, Teresa Baerens, Nevada, 49.14. 4, Brittany Aoyama, Boise State, 49.37. 5, Samantha Wicks, Boise State, 49.76. San Jose State entries - 14, Brynne Beneke, 50.37. 18, Christina Bruni, 50.85. 37, Angel Van Hofwegen, 52.70. 37. Amber Nelson, 52.70. 40, Michaela McLean, 52.41. 46, Allison Davis, 52.89. NP, Alyssa Cable, x53.90. NP, Brooke Hammond, x52.57. NP, Cassidy Robinson, 52.75.
200 Breaststroke - 1, Yawen Li, Nevada, 2:08.49. 2, Maria Harutjunjan, Wyoming, 2:13.63. 3 Lina Rathsack, UNLV, 2:13.88. 4, Heather Harper, UNLV, 2:14.56. 5, Arantxa Medina-Alegria, Nevada, 2:14.63. San Jose State entries - 19, Dominique Yoder, 2:18.70. 20, Amanda Buxbaum, 2:19.38. 22, Jenner Johnson, 2:22.97. NP, Shannon Slaught, x2:21.06.
200 Butterfly - 1, Frida Berggren, San Diego State, 1:58.08. 2, Summer Harrison, San Diego State, 1:58.16. 3, Jessica Bottelberghe, Boise State, 1:58.60. 4, Molly Coonce, Wyoming, 1:59.47. 5, Sita Kusserow, Nevada, 1:59.85. San Jose State entry - 27, Kayla Nakamoto, 2:07.15.
Platform Diving - 1, Krysta Palmer, Nevada, 343.40. 2, Erin Kohlbeck, 274.60. 3, Kari Campbell, Wyoming, 273.50. 4, Jordan Marthens, Boise State, 255.70. 5, Makena Chamoures, San Diego State, 237.65. San Jose State entries - 21, Kylie Fonseca, 169.35. 23, Cari Reiswig, 139.75.
400 Freestyle Relay - 1, Boise State, 3:16.88. 2, UNLV, 2:17.58. 3, San Diego State, 3:18.43. 4, Nevada, 3:19.94. 5, San Jose State (Riley Spitser, Brynne Beneke, Taylor Solorio, Christina Bruni), 3:21.59. 6, Wyoming, 3:22.30. 7, Air Force, 3:22.93. 8, Fresno State, 3:23.15. 9, New Mexico, 3:23.45. 10, Colorado State, 3:24.03.