It was an early Friday morning for the Utah swimming and diving team as they took off on a 6 a.m flight to California. The team traveled to the sunny city of Los Angeles this past weekend. The diving team headed to the UCLA Diving Invitational while the women’s swimming team traveled to USC and UCLA for a couple of competitive Pac-12 swim meets between two powerful top 20 teams.
The Utes met on Friday, Jan. 13 with the No. 20 UCLA Bruins. On Saturday, Jan. 14 they faced the No. 6 USC Trojans women’s swimming team. After winning only a few events, the Utes still fell short against the two Pac-12 powerhouses.
“It was a rough weekend for us going between some stiff competition,” said head coach Joe Dykstra. “We got beat up between two really tough teams, teams that are ranked.”
On Friday, sophomore Genevieve Robertson came out on top for the Utes with a first place win with a time of 1:04.37 in the 100 breaststroke and the 200 breaststroke with a time of 2:15.44. Senior Stina Colleou came in third in the 100 breast, finishing with a time of at 1:04.58.
At the end of the day at UCLA, Dorien Butter, Kristine Pataray, Jenna Marsh and Gillian St. John of the Utah relay team crushed the 200 free relay race against the Bruins and finished in first place. These four finished the competition with a time of 1:35.91.
At USC on Saturday, the Utes fell 138-106 against the Trojans. Stina Colleou came in first with a time of 2:16.80 in the 200 breaststroke. Junior Kat Wickham took first in the 500 free, 5:07.92, while Darby Wayner won the 100 fly with a time of 57.25.
A couple of performances that stood out Saturday from the Lady Utes came from Jordan Anderson, Robertson and Isabella Kearns. Anderson took first in the 200 IM touching the wall at 2:05.70. Coming in second was Robertson in the 200 breaststroke (2:17.79) and Kearns came in close second in the 500 free at 5:17.41.
The Utes will go head-to-head against the BYU Cougars during a Red Out rivalry meet this coming Saturday, Jan 21, at 11 a.m. The Utes hope to not only bring home a win on Senior Day, but also hope to win the Holy War.
“It’s always a great atmosphere and a very large crowd,” Dykstra said. “There’s usually a great turn out with a large and enthusiastic crowd, and it brings out the best in everybody. It’s an intense swim meet. We also get to honor our seniors as well which is really special.”
Since it’s Senior Day, Dykstra hopes his seniors can soak up every second that they are in the Ute Natatorium.
“I would tell them to really take in the moment this Saturday — to take in five minutes to absorb the moment and the atmosphere around them,” Dykstra said. “This is a memory that will stick with them forever.”