Husky Swimmers Competing at U.S. Open

July 31, 2008

MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. - A total of 13 Husky swimmers are competing this week in the 2008 U.S. Open swimming championships at the University of Minnesota Aquatics Center in Minneapolis, Minn., July 29-Aug. 2. The U.S. Open serves as the U.S. National Team selection event for the 2009 World University Games next summer in Belgrade, Serbia.

The U.S. will take 13 men and 13 women from the U.S. Open - the top eligible qualifier in each event - to the World University Games.

The Husky women have eight swimmers competing, headlined by three-time national champion Ariana Kukors, who will be a sophomore in the fall. Kukors is coming off a strong performance in the U.S. Olympic Swim Trials where she posted three finishes of sixth or better.

Kukors comes into the event with the top time in the nation among all competitors in the 200-meter individual medley with a qualifying time of 2 minutes 10.40 seconds. She will also compete in the 100-meter breaststroke where she is ranked ninth among the competitors.

Junior Erin Campbell will compete in three events - the 100- and 200-meter backstroke and the 100 fly - while senior Genevieve Patterson is competing in the 100- and 200-meter breaststroke, senior Lindsey Sharp will take part in the 50-meter freestyle and sophomore Emilee Jennings is competing in the 4x100 relay with her Husky teammates for Washington Aquatics. Sisters Jennifer and Danielle Gong will both compete in the 200 IM. Jennifer, a junior, will also compete in the 400 IM and Danielle, an incoming freshman, will swim in the 100 fly.

On the men's side, five Huskies are competing in Minneapolis, led by senior Evan Bernier who is competing in six events: the 50-meter, 100-meter and 200-meter freestyle; the 100-meter butterfly, 100-meter backstroke and the 200-meter individual medley.

Senior Jon Banker will compete in five events (100- and 200-meter back, 200- and 400-meter IM and 100 fly) while sophomores Ben Aaberg (100 free, 200 IM) and Andre Blyth (100- and 200-meter fly) will also compete along with senior Scott Spansail (200- and 400-meter free).

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