Ute briefs

By By Chris Kamrani

By Chris Kamrani

Utes start swimming season off right

Friday’s Reddish Relays and the season-opening meet Saturday gave first-year head coach Greg Winslow something to smile about.

The Ute men took home first place in the 300 back relay and the Ute women placed second in seven out of the ten events of the Reddish Relays held Friday night.

“I’m really excited about where we are as a team,” Wilson stated. “We just need to keep improving and learn how to race.”

The Ute women didn’t disappoint their coach. Opening up the season the next day with a strong Mountain West conference opponent, the Ute women claimed victory over New Mexico, 137-104. But to capture the win the women had to come from behind as they won the last six events of the day.

The 200 medley-relay team of Kelly McIntyre, Caitlin Tidwell, Beth Gunderson and Jessica Moon started off the comeback victory with a 0.1 second win over the Lobos, with a time of 1:52.46.

“We swam hard and showed a lot of heart coming from behind to get the victory,” Winslow said. “This was a well-coached New Mexico team and it’s a step in the right direction for us.”

The Utes will be in next be in action in Denver, where they will take on Denver and Arkansas.

Cross Country places ninth over weekend

The Ute Cross Country team was in action over the weekend in Fayetteville, Ark., for the 19th annual Chile Pepper Invitational. This was the third-straight year the Utes have participated in this event.

Out of the 41 teams competing — which also included three top-25 teams — the Utes placed 9th overall. The Utes were lead by freshman Lauren Lewis, who finished with an overall place of 31st. Sophomore Alyssa Abbott, who finished 57th, and junior Kellie Anderson, who finished 68th, had good showings as well.

Coach Kyle Kepler was optimistic despite some drawbacks.

“This wasn’t our best team race of the year due to some illness, Kepler said. “But I felt like our women really fought hard and ran great in the middle of the race.”

The Invitational was a 6K event — the second this year for the Utes. The team will be off this week before heading to San Diego for Mountain West Conference Championships.