Cougs, Golden Bears meet in pool

WSU will face second Pac-12 opponent of season Saturday morning



Freshman butterfly swimmer Emily Barrier finishes third in the women’s 100 yard butterfly heat against Boise State on Oct. 14 at Gibb Pool.

KATIE ARCHER, Evergreen reporter

The WSU swimming will host No. 5 University of California, Berkeley, on Saturday in Gibb Pool. The Cougars recently defeated Northern Arizona University 135-126 at home Friday night.

Sophomore Taylor McCoy won multiple events for the Cougars: 100-yard backstroke, 200-yard backstroke and the 200-yard individual medley. McCoy was on the winning 200-yard medley relay with senior Linnea Lindberg, freshman Emily Barrier and sophomore Chloe Larson.

The team’s record is 3-2 overall and 0-1 in the Pac-12 with the conference loss coming from then No. 1 Stanford University. Going into this weekend, Head Coach Matt Leach said the biggest goal is to try and mimic the intensity the team will see at the Pac-12 Championships.

To keep the energy going into the Cal meet, Leach said the swimmers cannot stay focused on a positive or a negative. After a race, the swimmers need to take the good parts of their race, learn from the bad parts and move forward, he said.

Cal has had a great deal of success in the history of their swimming program. In each of the last 10 years, the Golden Bears have placed in the top three at the NCAA Championships. Cal also has a long history of beating the Cougars with big point spreads.

Since 2001-2002 season, the Cougars have faced off against the Golden Bears eight times, not including invitationals and Pac-10/Pac-12 Championships, and the Cougars have lost each time.

The last time the Cougars faced the Golden Bears was at Cal two years ago resulting in a 155-97 WSU loss. Leach wants his team to focus on staying in their lanes and to not let a name dictate how they prepare and focus on their race strategies.

The Cougars will start the meet 10 a.m. Saturday at Gibb Pool in hopes of breaking their long losing streak against Cal.