By Kavin Mistry:
Confidence is building throughout the locker room for the San Jose State women’s swimming and diving team after facing top-tier competition over the past week.
Coming off a hard-fought loss to #2 ranked UC Berkeley and a win over CSU Bakersfield, SJSU finished third Monday (327.5 points), just behind Boise State (354 points). On Tuesday, the Spartans finished third again with 565 points, just edging out UC San Diego (526 points).
It was a quick turnaround for the Spartans, who had three meets in four days over the New Year’s weekend.
“It was fun, but definitely was a challenge,” said junior swimmer Colleen Humel. “You basically had three meets in a row so you have a chance to improve every single time.”
This week SJSU, took part in two meets in La Jolla, California.
In Monday’s meet, the San Jose State faced Boise State, Air Force, Incarnate Word, UC San Diego and San Diego State, and on Tuesday competed against Rice, San Diego State and UC San Diego.
Spartans’ diver Cari Reiswig continued her rampant pace on the board finishing Monday with SJSU’s only individual event win, a season best 320.60 mark in the three-meter dive. On Tuesday she also finished first in the three meter-dive, with a score of a 318.55.
“I have been finding consistency on my 3-meter springboard,” Reiswig said. “Last year I was going up and down a lot and I feel like this has been a really big improvement.”
Reiswig has been the Spartans’ record-breaker this season, seemingly every week breaking her own marks on the board.
Members of the team said last weekend was a good chance to gain experience for the younger swimmers. The Spartans have 14 freshman this season, which makes this experience important going forward.
“It was a great opportunity to compete against some really top-notch competition,” said head coach Sage Hopkins. “That is really what we’re looking for at this point in the season as we approach the conference championships.”
Hopkins said he likes the improvement of the team overall and feels stiffer competition will help his swimmers and divers build confidence going forward.
“All three of these programs are really strong,” Hopkins said. “Rice has one of the better teams that they have had in years and San Diego State is clearly one of the top couple of teams in our conference and UC San Diego is one of the top D-II programs in the country.”
Humel turned in one of the Spartans top finishes on Tuesday, second place in the 100 meter backstroke.
The Spartans swimmers’ next meet will be their closest to SJSU this swim season when they face Cal State East Bay in Hayward on Jan. 13. The divers will head down to southern California to face members of the Pac-12 conference in the Bruin Invitational on Jan. 13.