San Diego State Selected as Favorite to Win 2012-13 Mountain West Women's Swimming & Diving Title

Sept. 18, 2012

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. - A voting panel comprised of the nine Mountain West head women's swimming & diving coaches chose San Diego State as the favorite to win the 2013 MW championship title, edging out defending champion Boise State by one point. The Aztecs collected four first-place votes and 60 total points, while Boise State was selected to finish second with 59 points and claimed five first-place votes. One point also separates third and fourth place as UNLV collected 48 points for third place, just ahead of Wyoming in fourth with 47 points. Colorado State (34 points) and New Mexico (26 points) claimed fifth and sixth place, respectively, followed by Fresno State (seventh, 22 points), Nevada (eighth, 17 points) and Air Force (ninth, 11 points). The 2013 title will be contested on Feb. 20-23 at the Palo Alto College Aquatic Center in San Antonio, Texas.

San Diego State returns 17 letterwinners, including 12 all-MW honorees, from last season's Mountain West runner-up team. Senior Katelyn Weddle leads the group of returnees and will be working to defend her MW title in the 100-yard breaststroke. Junior Anna Steiner is back to lead a strong group of divers for the Aztecs. Steiner earned all-MW honors and competed at the NCAA Championships in all three diving events in 2011-12.

Boise State returns 19 letterwinners from last season's Mountain West championship team. In just six seasons, head coach Kristin Hill, the 2012 MW Swimming Coach of the Year, has led the Broncos to conference championships in each of the past three seasons. Senior Stevie Hughey and sophomore Sydney Johansen return from their 200-yard freestyle relay honorable mention All-American performance and will have to fill the swim shoes left behind by relay teammates Amber Boucher, the 2012 MW Swimmer of the Year, and Stephanie North. Boucher and North combined to win four individual and four relay titles at the 2012 MW Championships in Oklahoma City, Okla.

The UNLV squad features honorable mention All-Americans Rachel Dixon and Katelyne Herrington. Both juniors, Dixon placed 15th in the 50-yard freestyle at the 2012 NCAA Championships, while Herrington placed 14th in the 100-yard butterfly.

Other Mountain West women's swimming & diving notes:
* A familiar face joins the head coaching ranks in the Mountain West. Former UNLV assistant Kunio Kono takes over as the New Mexico head coach in 2012-13.

* Fresno State and Nevada join the Mountain West this season. The Bulldogs, under the direction of head coach Jeanne Fleck, set eight school records during the 2011-12 campaign, including two relays, two dives and four individual races. The Wolf Pack has a new head coach this season. Abby Steketee was introduced to lead the Nevada program on July 3. Steketee spent the past four seasons as an assistant at South Carolina.

* On Friday, Sept. 21, regular season competition begins with San Diego State hosting San Diego for a pentathlon. Dual meets get into full swing on Saturday, Sept. 29, when UNLV travels to San Diego State.

2012-13 MOUNTAIN WEST WOMEN'S SWIMMING & DIVING PRESEASON COACHES' POLL
Pl. Team (1st place votes) Points
1. San Diego State (4) 60
2. Boise State (5) 59
3. UNLV 48
4. Wyoming 47
5. Colorado State 34
6. New Mexico 26
7. Fresno State 22
8. Nevada 17
9. Air Force 11