Women's Swimming Downs Fresno State, Extends Winning Streak To Seven

Jan. 26, 2002

FRESNO, Calif. - Naya Higashijima and Birte Steven each won three races as Oregon State won its seventh consecutive dual meet and guaranteed its third straight winning season with a 151-143 victory at Fresno State in non-league women's swimming Saturday.

Because OSU does not field a diving team, Fresno State earned 32 points in the two diving events and held a 93-92 advantage over the Beavers with five races remaining. Oregon State won the next four races, however, and picked up second place finishes in three of those races to secure a victory.

'We got off to a rocky start and weren't racing well,' OSU head coach Mariusz Podkoscielny said. 'We warmed up and got more into racing after the first session. We are excited coming out with a 'W'. We only had 14 girls swimming so we were spread pretty thin.'

Oregon State lost 136-126 at Fresno two seasons ago and that defeat served as motivation for the Beavers Saturday.

'We lost here two years ago and we talked about how we were passive and how we felt coming out of the pool that day,' Podkoscielny said. 'Nobody wanted to walk out of this place today thinking we could have done something different.'

Higashijima raised her dual meet race season win total to 23 with victories in the 1650 yard freestyle, 200 butterfly and 500 freestyle. Steven finished first in the 100 breaststroke, 200 breaststroke and 400 individual medley.

Kristin Huston placed first in the 50 freestyle and the 100 freestyle and took second in the 100 backstroke. Mari Embertson placed second in the 100 breaststroke, 200 breaststroke and 400 individual medley, and Paula Finlay earned a pair of seconds in the 200 freestyle and 200 backstroke. Suzanne Starkey picked up OSU's other individual first place finish with a win in the 100 butterfly.

Oregon State's current dual meet winning streak of seven is the third longest in the history of the program and trails only the school record of 11 straight wins, which has been accomplished twice.

'It's nice to guarantee our third straight winning season and the winning streak is nice, but really from the standpoint of what it does for us down the road it is more of a pride thing and can give us confidence,' Podkoscielny said. 'It doesn't mean anything when you go to the next meet -- every opponent is different. Swimming is not like other team sports where you have to have a good record to reach the postseason, so it doesn't weigh as much in order for us to reach the Pac-10 and NCAA Championships.'

The Beavers will swim at Washington State Friday, Feb. 1, and Saturday, Feb. 2, before returning home to host Washington on Feb. 9.

'We are going into the most important five weeks of our season,' Podkoscielny said. 'Washington State and Washington are going to be extremely tough teams. It is going to be very good match up for us.'

200 MEDLEY RELAY - 1. Oregon State (Starkey, Steven, Renwick, Finlay), 1:50.39, 2. Fresno State (Wigginton, McLaettrick, Fishback, Mickelsen), 1:52.37, 3. Oregon State (Haas, Embertson, Higashijima, Chambers), 1:53.63, 4. Fresno State (Hatch, Brock, Collins, Palmberg), 1:57.02. 1650 FREESTYLE - 1. Higashijima, OSU, 17:24.41, 2. Klenner, FSU, 17:38.65, 3. Haney, FSU, 18:00.10, 4. Leon, FSU, 18:12.04, 5. Peterson, OSU, 18:15.24, 6. Starkweather, FSU, 18:16.67, 7. Stoddard, OSU, 18:48.75. 200 FREESTYLE - 1. Johnson, FSU, 1:56.20, 2. Finlay, OSU, 1:56.33, 3. Chambers, OSU, 1:57.21, 4. Mickelsen, FSU, 1:58.25, 5. Personius, OSU, 1:59.81, 6. Cannady, FSU, 2:15.64. 100 BACKSTROKE - 1. Wigginton, FSU, 58.69, 2. Huston, OSU, 1:00.85, 3. Lewis, FSU, 1:01.30, 4. Starkey, OSU, 1:02.37, 5. Hitch, FSU, 1:03.45, 6. Hong, OSU, 1:03.82, 7. Eckart, FSU, 1:07.91. 100 BREASTSTROKE - 1. Steven, OSU, 1:06.77, 2. Embertson, OSU, 1:08.82, 3. McLaettrick, FSU, 1:09.39, 4. Brock, FSU, 1:11.13, 5. Fishback, FSU, 1:11.81, 6. Reynolds, OSU, 1:12.62. 200 BUTTERFLY - 1. Higashijima, OSU, 2:05.13, 2. Haas, OSU, 2:11.41, 3. Valley, FSU, 2:12.73, 4. Collins, FSU, 2:14.30, 5. Jimenez, FSU, 2:16.69. 50 FREESTYLE - 1. Huston, OSU, 24.42, 2. Lewis, FSU, 24.72, 3. Johnson, FSU, 25.38, 4. Renwick, OSU, 25.50, 5. Chambers, OSU, 25.53, 6. Palmberg, FSU, 25.68, 7. Wilson, FSU, 27.69. THREE METER DIVING - 1. Recupito, FSU, 249.825, 2. Paulekas, FSU, 245.1, 3. Raley, FSU, 234.6. 100 FREESTYLE - 1. Huston, OSU, 53.09, 2. Lewis, FSU, 53.14, 3. Johnson, 53.73, 4. Palmberg, FSU, 55.10, 5. Chambers, OSU, 55.52, 6. Personius, OSU, 56.49, 7. Wilson, FSU, 58.78. 200 BACKSTROKE - 1. Wigginton, FSU, 2:08.27, 2. Finlay, OSU, 2:10.20, 3. Hong, OSU, 2:11.28, 4. Hitch, FSU, 2:13.39, 5. Mickelson, FSU, 2:14.71, 6. Eckart, FSU, 2:23.75. 200 BREASTSTROKE - 1. Steven, OSU, 2:22.49, 2. Embertson, OSU, 2:27.76, 3. McLaettrick, FSU, 2:27.82, 4. Brock, FSU, 2:30.62, 5. Fishback, FSU, 2:34.02, 6. Reynolds, OSU, 2:38.19. 500 FREESTYLE - 1. Higashijima, OSU, 5:02.09, 2. Klenner, FSU, 5:04.87, 3. Haas, OSU, 5:06.88, 4. Peterson, OSU, 5:21.39, 5. Haney, FSU, 5:25.57, 6. Leon, FSU, 5:26.51, 7. Jimenez, FSU, 5:29.32. 100 BUTTERFLY - 1. Starkey, OSU, 59.30, 2. Renwick, OSU, 59.67, 3. Collins, FSU, 1:01.29, 4. Valley, FSU, 1:02.70, 5. Reynolds, OSU, 1:04.72. ONE METER DIVING - Results not available. 400 INDIVIDUAL MEDLEY - 1. Steven, OSU, 4:32.49, 2. Embertson, OSU, 4:36.39, 3. Haas, OSU, 4:38.43, 4. Klenner, FSU, 4:40.66, 5. Starkweather, FSU, 4:44.79, 6. Hong, OSU, 4:44.86, 7. Wigginton, FSU, 4:46.94, 8. Hitch, FSU, 5:01.24. 200 FREESTYLE RELAY - 1. Fresno State (Johnson, Mickelsen, Palmberg, Lewis), 1:39.22 2. Fresno State (Collins, Brock, Fishback, McLaettrick), 1:44.68, Oregon State (Starkey, Renwick, Finlay, Huston), 1:38.61 (Disqualified).

-OSU-

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