Swimming Heads to Minnesota Grand Prix

Nov. 12, 2009

This Week: The Washington State University swim team will travel to Minneapolis for a three-day invite hosted by the University of Minnesota...racing will begin Friday Nov. 13, and continue through Nov. 15...preliminary sessions will begin at 9 a.m. each day...finals sessions will begin at 6 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and 5 p.m. Sunday...10 of the 12 Cougars competing in individual races this weekend are seeded in the top 10 of their respective events...Michaela Ahlin is projected to win the 100 and 200 butterfly while Rugile Mileisyte is predicted to win the 50 freestyle...more detailed information about the meet, including schedule of events can be found HERE...live results will be posted throughout the meet HERE.

Cougar Catch-Up: The Cougars have a 1-2 record in dual meets this season after their trip to Arizona last weekend...the women edged out Northen Arizona by winning the final event to give them a seven-point win...the team was on short rest when it traveled to Tempe, Ariz., to take on Arizona State the next day...the Cougars lost the meet 209-78.

Last Season: The Cougars finished the season with a 6-2 dual meet record after opening the season with a 6-0 start, which included a win over BSU...the undefeated start was Quam's career best and one win away from tying the program best start of 7-0 (1978, Pipher)...Quam also became the first WSU head coach to have three 4-0 starts in her career...over the course of last season the Cougars se 26 school records in 14 different events with 20 of those performances coming at the Pacific-10 Conference Championships...Ahlin, Mileisyte and Elyse Peterson represented WSU at the NCAA Championships, the most in school history.

2009-10 Outlook: This year's squad returns 13 letterwinners including school record holders Ahlin (100 butterfly, 200 butterfly, 400 IM), Mileisyte (50 freestyle, 100 freestyle) and Talor Whitaker (200 IM)...the team has also welcomed seven new freshmen.

Head Coach Erica Quam on the Minnesota Grand Prix: 'Our goal is to get as many swimers into the finals sessions as we can. This type of format (prelims and finals) is what we need to practice. We have to get up and race strong in the morning to try and qualify in the fastest heat possible just like at Pac-10's and NCAA's later this season. We've been working hard and training with intensity and consistency. We have to step it up a level in our racing to do the things we have talked about as a team though. I believe this meet provides us the opportunity to do just that.'

Coaching Staff: Head coach Erica Quam is in her eighth season at WSU...under Quam the Cougars have set 19 school records and earned 82 different spots on school's all-time top 10 lists...she is joined by assistant coach Lindsay Henahan and student assistant coach Jesse Grow...Henahan is in her second season while Grow is new this season.

Next up for the Cougars: WSU will have a break after its trip to Minnesota before the USA Swimming Short Course Nationals...the four-day event will begin Dec. 3, in Federal Way, Wash.

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