Swimming Kicks Off Home Season Against San Diego

Oct. 24, 2001

COUGARS HOME OPENER VERSUS SAN DIEGO: The Washington State University women's swim team opens its home season with a dual meet against the University of San Diego Saturday. The first ever meeting between the two teams begins at 11 a.m. in Gibb Pool at Pullman. Against the Toreros, the Cougars look to improve upon times from the first week of competition that are better than last year's early season times.

'We are looking to swim extremely fast in the first and last relay events,' WSU Head Coach Rocco Aceto said. 'Many of the times we were able to swim last week, we weren't even able to hit until January of last season. So we're definitely ahead of where we were last year, but still not ahead of where I'd like to be.'

NEXT WEEK: Washington State has a weekend off from competition to train before hosting its second home meet of the season. The competition against Central Washington and Northern Illinois begins at 11 a.m. in Gibb Pool.

LAST WEEK: Washingtn State University women's swim team split a pair of meets last week to open its competitive season. The Cougars breezed by San Jose State Friday to in their first meet of the year. The Cougars jumped out to a 75-18 lead after the first five events before cruising to a 119-96 victory, marking the second consecutive year they have defeated the Spartans.

'The women swam well considering the strength work they are doing in the weight room and the consistently tough training we have thrown at them the last couple of weeks,' WSU Head Coach Rocco Aceto said. 'We paced our races well and tried to race in a technically sound manner.

WSU started quickly with a 1-2 finish in the 400 medley relay, led by the team of Andree-Anne LeRoy, Rachel Dong, Lindsay Henahan and Rebecca Cohen. The quartet recorded a time of 3 minutes, 54.68 seconds, followed by the WSU 'B' team in 3:57.45. This helped set the pace for the Cougars to cruise to victory, despite the fact San Jose State scored 32 uncontested points in diving events because WSU has no diving program. Washington State went on to win every swimming event of the meet.

The Cougars faced significant competition Saturday against Pac-10 foe California. Washington State University women's swim fell to the Golden Bears, last year's seventh-place finisher at the NCAA Championships, 147-105, despite the fact the Cougars recorded wins in both relay events.

WSU got off to a fast start by winning the first event of the day, the 200 medley relay, with a team of Nicole Chinn, Rachel Dong, Lindsay Henahan, and Taryn Ternent. The group's time of 1 minute, 46.34 seconds edged out a Cal team containing 2000 Olympic gold medallist Staciana Stitts. The Cougars also ended the meet with a strong showing in the 200 freestyle relay. The quartet of Ternent, Dong, Henahan, and Andree-Anne LeRoy claimed victory for WSU with a time of 1:36.62.

'With our expectations and where we are at this point in the year, being able to begin and end the meet with wins against a legitimate top 10 team is something we feel good about and helps us reinforce where we think the program can go,' Aceto said.

WSU EVENT WINNERS: After the first week of competition, sophomore Rachel Dong and junior Rebecca Cohen lead the Cougars in dual-meet wins with two each (the figure in parenthesis represents wins as a relay team member).

1. Rachel Dong 		2 (3)1. Rebecca Cohen	2 (1)3. Taryn Ternent	1 (2)3. Katie Byrnes		1 (1)3. Semah Zavareh	1 (1)3. Melissa Hubley	13. Jill Olson		18. Lindsay Henahan	(3)8. Andree-Anne LeRoy	(2)8. Nicole Chinn		(1)8. Sara Schmied		(1)

COACH ROCCO ACETO: Rocco Aceto is currently in his fifth year as head coach of the WSU women's swim team. Under his direction, the Cougars have sent athletes to the NCAA Championships four years in a row, gained their first three-time NCAA All-American, garnered recognition as the second best swimming team in the nation for academics, eclipsed school records 38 times and established 101 positions in the WSU All-Time top 10 list in his four years with the team.

Prior to his appointment at WSU, Aceto served for two years as the assistant coach for the men's and women's swimming programs at Auburn University.

Originally from Portland, Maine, Aceto competed on the swim team at his alma mater, North Carolina State, establishing school and Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) records in the 50 freestyle and 400 and 800 freestyle relays during his collegiate career.

2001-02 TEAM CAPTAINS: Among the 14 returning athletes for Washington State is a trio of talented captains, Rachel Dong, Melissa Hubley, and Taryn Ternent.

'When you put these three student-athletes together, learning to be leaders, I think we have a bright future for this team,' Aceto said.

Hubley, a junior from Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, Canada, comes off a season in which she broke her own school record in the 200 butterfly while placing fifth at the Pac-10 Championships, qualified for the NCAA Championships, and received the team's Most Outstanding Award. During the summer, she went on to win a gold medal in the 200-meter butterfly at the 2001 Canada Games.

Dong's collegiate career got off to a fast start during her freshman year. The native of Paramount, Calif., broke the school record in the 100 butterfly and contributed to three relay teams setting WSU records at the 2001 Pac-10 Championships. Currently, she holds positions on seven Cougar top-10 lists for individual events. After the season, Dong received the team's Most Improved Award and Coach's Award.

Ternent also excelled in her first year as a Cougar. The sophomore from Edenvale, South Africa smashed the school record in the 50 freestyle en route to placing eighth at the Pac-10 Championships last season, and swam on two relay teams that set WSU records. In addition, Ternent owns places on three other school top-10 lists.

ATHLETES IN WSU RECORD BOOKS: Cougar swimmers currently hold 41 positions on WSU's all-time top 10 lists for individual events, including five school records: Rachel Dong-100 fly (55.68 seconds), Melissa Hubley-200 fly (2:00.36), Andree-Anne LeRoy-200 IM (2:03.53), 400 IM (4:24.16), Taryn Ternent-50 free (23.26). The following swimmers currently hold positions in WSU top 10 lists:Rachel Dong-100 fly (1st), 50 free (2nd), 100 breast (2nd), 200 breast (2nd), 100 free (4th), 200 IM (8th), 200 free (10th)Andree-Anne LeRoy-200 IM (1st), 400 IM (1st), 200 back (2nd), 100 back (5th)Taryn Ternent-50 free (1st), 100 free (2nd), 100 back (2nd), 100 fly (10th)Melissa Hubley-200 fly (1st), 100 fly (2nd)Rebecca Cohen-200 free (2nd), 500 free (2nd), 1,650 freestyle (3rd), 1,000 freestyle (4th), 100 free (6th)Jill Olson-1,650 free (2nd), 1,000 freestyle (2nd), 500 free (6th)Lindsay Henahan-100 fly (3rd), 100 free (3rd), 50 free (4th)Semah Zavareh-1,650 free (4th), 500 free (8th), 1,000 free (8th)Nicole Chinn-100 back (4th), 200 IM (9th), 400 IM (10th)Katie Byrnes-200 back (5th), 100 back (6th), 400 IM (9th)Christina Swanson-50 free (9th), 100 breast (9th)Sasha Taylor-200 back (4th)Sara Schmied-50 free (7th)

COUGAR RECRUITS: Giving the Cougars even more weapons for the 2001-01 season are Lisa Irwin and Jadine Louw, two freshmen with plenty of potential.

Irwin is a butterfly swimmer from Vacaville, Calif. who can give the team an immediate boost, especially in the dual-meet season.

Coach Aceto went international again to recruit Louw, who hopes to continue the tradition of outstanding South African swimmers at Washington State. Louw, a native of Welgemoed, won 2001 South African National Championships for the 17-18 year old age group in the 50, 100, 400 and 800-meter freestyle events. She then went on to garner a bronze medal in the 100-meter freestyle and a fourth-place finish in the 200-meter freestyle at the 2001 South African Open Championships.

'Jadine definitely has a world class kick and great distance per stroke,' Aceto said. 'She's loaded with talent, and if she continues to improve, can help at the Pac-10 and NCAA level immediately.


Now on Pac-12 Network
1:30 PM PT

Airing on:

  • Pac-12 Network
Get Pac-12 Networks
Pac-12 Networks Channel Finder