Swim team places seventh at Phill Hansel Invitational

All Cougars broke season-best times in individual events



Freshman Keiana Fountaine finishes third in the women’s 100 free against Boise State University on Oct. 14 at Gibb Pool. Fountaine set the program record for the 100 free with a time of 49.62 on Sunday at the Phill Hansel Invitational.

SIGMUND SEROKA, Evergreen reporter

WSU swimming team finished seventh overall at the Phill Hansel Invitational in Houston, Texas, on Friday through Sunday.

On the first day, every WSU swimmer broke season-best times in their individual events. This included freshman Emily Barrier, who earned fifth place all-time for WSU in the 50 freestyle. Her time of 23.07 was good for a ninth-place finish at the event.

Head Coach Matt Leach was impressed with Barrier’s performance and efforts along with many others on the team.

“In the 50 free we saw multiple lifetime bests,” Leach said. “[Freshman Paige Gardner] broke the 24-second mark for the first time in her career, swimming a 23.88. [Freshman Keiana Fountaine] went lifetime best this morning and followed that up with a lifetime best this evening.”

Day two of the invite saw Emily Barrier come back for seconds by swimming the 10th-fastest 200 free ever for WSU in her leg of the 800 free relay.

The second day also brought success to the Cougars in the 100 breaststroke as freshman Lauren Burckel, sophomore Mackenzie Duarte and senior Linnea Lindberg broke WSU’s all-time top-10 with ninth, third and second respectively. Adding to the list of records was sophomore Taylor McCoy, who earned the sixth-fastest time in the 400 individual medley with a final time of 4:20.81.

At the end of two days the Cougars sat in sixth place overall with 407.5 points.

Transitioning into the third day of the event, WSU earned more all-time finishes with Fountaine setting the program record for the 100 free with a time of 49.62, good for fourth place in the invitational.

McCoy set the second-fastest time in program history for the 200 backstroke with a time of 1:56.86, marking her third time on the top-10 list.

McCoy was joined by Duarte, who earned the second-fastest time in the program for the 200 breaststroke at 2:11.84. Burckel’s time of 2:15.13 put her eighth in program history.

As a team, the Cougars finished seventh out of 12 teams, with host University of Houston winning its third-consecutive Phill Hansel Invitational.

WSU returns to the pool at 1 p.m. Jan. 11 in Tucson, Arizona, to begin conference competition.