Swimming & Diving Heads South For Pair Of Meets

THIS WEEKEND - SPARTANS HEAD SOUTH FOR PAIR OF EVENTS
The San Jose State University women’s swimming and diving team begins the 2009 calendar year with a dual meet at Cal State Bakersfield on Saturday, January 3. The first of 16 events at the Hillman Aquatics Center is now scheduled for an earlier 10:00 a.m. start.

The day will follow a standard collegiate 16-event dual format, beginning with the 200 medley relay and ending with the 400 freestyle relay. The complete order of swimming events is as follows: 200 medley relay, 1000 free, 200 free, 100 back, 100 breast, 200 fly, 50 free, 100 free, 200 back, 200 breast, 500 free, 100 fly, 200 IM and 400 free relay. There will be two short breaks after the 50 free and 100 fly. The one-meter and three-meter diving events will take place during the swimming.

San Jose State currently boasts a dual meet record of 9-1, having reeled off nine straight victories since a season-opening loss at No. 2 Stanford. The Spartans are rated an all-time program high of third in the latest CSCAA/CollegeSwimming.com Division I Mid-Major rankings.

Cal State Bakersfield enters Saturday’s meet at 1-5 overall. This will mark the third straight year under head coach Sage Hopkins, that the Spartans have met Cal State Bakersfield in dual action. San Jose State is a perfect 3-0 against the Runners during this stretch. Hopkins is a 1997 cum laude graduate of CSUB. San Jose State will later play host to the Roadrunners in a dual meet at The Aquatics Center on campus on Saturday, January 24.

On Sunday, January 4, the Spartans will be at the Anteater Aquatics Complex on the campus of UC Irvine, for the second and final day of the annual UCI/Ayres Invitationals. San Jose State will miss the sprint, distance and diving meets on Saturday while in Bakersfield, but will take part in Sunday’s relay and diving meets. The Spartans are the defending team champions of the relay invitational, having won five of 10 events to take the 2008 title. They scored 336 points to hold off host UC Irvine (277) and Western Athletic Conference foes Boise State (258) and the University of San Diego (245) for their first Ayres crown of any kind.

This is a third consecutive trip to the Ayres Invitationals for San Jose State. The action is slated to get under way at 10:00 a.m. There will be a total of 17 schools competing during the weekend, with 10 men’s and 14 women’s squads expected on hand. The women’s side will have UCLA, Nebraska, Washington State, Wyoming, UC Irvine, Cal State Northridge, Pepperdine, San Diego, Concordia-Irvine, Soka, Claremont-Mudd-Scripps, Occidental and the University of Incarnate Word.

Hopkins is expected to have assistant coach Chris Michelmore, diving coach Brian Tanner, 19 swimmers and two divers accompany him on this trip. The Spartans will depart San Jose via three vans following a morning training session on Friday, January 2, spend that night in Bakersfield, then stay Saturday and Sunday in Irvine, and return home on Monday, January 5.

Following this weekend, the Spartans will travel to Davis, Calif., on Saturday, January 10, for a double dual meet against the host Aggies of UC Davis, and new Western Athletic Conference rival Fresno State. San Jose State previously raced past Fresno State, 198-80, at another double dual at UC Santa Cruz back on October 18.

SAN JOSE STATE UNIVERSITY (9-1, 5-0 WAC)
at CAL STATE BAKERSFIELD (1-5)
HILLMAN AQUATICS CENTER, BAKERSFIELD, CALIF.
SATURDAY, JANUARY 3, 10:00 A.M.

SAN JOSE STATE UNIVERSITY
at UC IRVINE/AYRES RELAY/DIVING INVITATIONALS
ANTEATER AQUATICS COMPLEX, IRVINE, CALIF.
SUNDAY, JANUARY 4, 10:00 A.M.


HOMECOMING FOR SAGE HOPKINS
San Jose State head coach Sage Hopkins is a 1997 cum laude graduate of Cal State Bakersfield. He returns to his alma mater for a third straight season in charge of the Spartans, on January 3. As a member of the Runner men’s swim team, Hopkins was a seven-time All-American and team captain. Hopkins, who was an assistant coach for the CSUB men’s squad from 1995-97, has a 3-0 dual meet record against the Runners as a head coach.

SAN JOSE STATE (9-1, 5-0 WAC) at CAL STATE BAKERSFIELD (1-5)
Cal State Bakersfield is in the fourth year of a five-year reclassification process from the NCAA Division II level up to Division I. The Runners placed seventh out of seven teams at the 2008 Conference-USA Championship, and will end their season at that event again this coming February in Houston, Texas.

CSUB is led by freshman breaststroke specialist Rachel McCall, who won the 100 breast (1:05.91) and was second in the 100 free while aiding her team to a third-place finish at the Winter Festival in Long Beach, Calif., December 12-14. Fellow Canadian Victoria Kreutz, who spent her freshman season at San Jose State, leads the diving contingent for the Runners, now as a junior.

The Runners are led by Pat Skehan, now in her 20th season in charge. She is the only head coach the CSUB women’s swim program has ever known.