Beavers Swim To Three Records

Nov. 29, 2001

LONG BEACH, Calif. - Naya Higashijima, Paula Finlay and Oregon State's 400-yard medley relay team all broke school records as the Beavers moved into second place Thursday after the opening day of the Speedo Cup women's swimming meet at Belmont Plaza pool. OSU (3-2 overall, 0-1 Pac-10) trails only Pacific (Calif.) in the 21-team field at the three-day meet.

'We had a very good day,' OSU head coach Mariusz Podkoscielny said. 'That was by far the best first day we've ever had here. We're ahead of UCSB (third-place California-Santa Barbara) and we lost a dual meet to them, so it's nice to be ahead of them ... we're on pace for our best score ever here by quite a ways.'

Higashijima broke her own record in the 500 freestyle twice - once in the preliminaries and then again in the finals in 4 minutes, 54.05 seconds. The junior was beaten in a race for the first time this season when she was edged by Pacific's Robin Errecart, Higashijima had won all 15 of her races in OSU's five dual meets.

Paula Finlay set a new OSU mark in the 200 individual medley with her time of 5:11.74 in the preliminaries, she placed fifth in the finals. Teammate Birte Steven placed sixth, and Steven's time of 2:05.79 in the preliminaries also broke the old Beaver record of 2:05.46 set by Finlay in the 1999-2000 Speedo Cup.

The OSU 400 medley relay team placed second 3:48.03 for a new Oregon State record, the old mark was 3:49.01 in last season's Speedo Cup. The Beavers also got a third-place finish from Kristin Huston in the 50 freestyle.

'The whole season, we've been racing tough and stressing racing and the competitive aspect,' Podkoscielny said of OSU's fast start Thursday. 'That carried through today. Not everyone is going to be on all the time as far as peak performance, but sometimes you have to be able to improvise and swim hard because of a big heart ... we had a lot of people swimming in the finals tonight, it was a huge team effort.

'Now we've got to make sure to carry this over to the next two days. Traditionally at this meet, each day has gotten better for us, I'm looking forward to some great performances tomorrow.'



TEAM SCORES - Complete team scores unavailable.50 FREESTYLE - 1. Lyndsay Mcnamee, Pacific, 23.34, 3. Kristin Huston, OSU, 23.69, 9. Suzanne Starkey, OSU, 24.26 (23.96 preliminary), 20. Bonnie Renwick, OSU, 24.83 (24.68 prelim), 65. Jill Personius, OSU, 25.71, 75. Kristin Martinec, OSU, 26.03, 87. Annie Zucker, OSU, 26.36. 500 FREESTYLE - 1. Robin Errecart, Pacific, 4:51.87, 2. Naya Higashijima, OSU, 4:54.05 (new school record), 11. Stephanie Chambers, OSU, 5:06.67, 14. Grace Peterson, OSU, 5:08.34, 27. Jill Personius, OSU, 5:13.31 (5:11.74 preliminary), 30 Verena Haas, OSU, 5:15.23 (5:05.78 preliminary), 57. Jillian Mcminn, OSU, 5:21.93, 69. Dana Stoddard, OSU, 5:26.30. 200 INDIVIDUAL MEDLEY - 1. Kris Willey, Pacific, 2:03.20, 5. Paula Finlay, OSU, 2:05.79 (2:04.54 preliminary, new school record) 6. Birte Steven, OSU, 2:05.79 (2:05.25 preliminary), 12. Mari Embertson, OSU, 2:08.96, 39. Sheila Tehranchi, 2:13.23, 47. Nicole Reynolds, OSU, 2:14.42, 51. Jessie Hong, OSU, 2:14.85. 200 FREESTYLE RELAY - 1. Pacific, 1:33.45, 4. Oregon State A, 1:36.5, 20. Oregon State B, 1:41.43. 400 MEDLEY RELAY - 1. Pacific, 3:43.04, 2. Oregon State A, 3:48.03, 8. Oregon State B, 3:59.69.

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