Gauchos sweep first two events at MPSF Championships

The UCSB women’s swimming team opened the 2012 Mountain Pacific Sports Federation Championships with a bang on Wednesday night, sweeping the evening’s two events: the 200 medley relay and the 800 freestyle relay.

In the 200 medley relay, the UCSB team of Allie Knight, Sophia Yamauchi, Andrea Ward and Kendall Neely took first in a time of 1:39.63, which is a new MPSF Championships meet record and an NCAA ‘B’ cut.

In the day’s second and final event, the Gaucho ‘A’ 800 free relay team consisting of Ward, Heren Alanis, Anne Peanasky and Emma Hunt captured first place in a time of 7:17.82, which beat out second-place UC Davis by .23 seconds. The time is a new school record by 1.02 seconds and an NCAA ‘B’ cut. The previous UCSB record in the event was set in 2007.

“The 800 free relay was so exciting,” said head coach Gregg Wilson. “Emma Hunt pulled it out in the end, she was behind the whole way and in the last lap, she pushed off and just had a great finish. It was great. The kids are doing crazy; they are doing a great job. We just need to keep it up.”

After going two-for-two in Wednesday’s events, the Gauchos jump out to an early lead in the four-day meet with 80 points. UC Davis is currently in second place with 68 points.

Action will continue on Thursday at East Los Angeles College as the 500 free, 200 individual medley, 50 free and 400 medley relay will be contested. Meanwhile, the diving competition will get underway at the US Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, beginning with the three-meter board.