SAN DIEGO - The UC San Diego women’s swimming and diving team split a pair of dual meets on Monday afternoon at host San Diego State’s Aztec Aquaplex, while the men’s squad suffered a 166-127 defeat to the United States Air Force Academy.
The Triton women, ranked sixth in the NCAA Division II, defeated Air Force, 177-117, and fell to a second Division I foe in the crosstown Aztecs, 146-138. They moved to 3-2 on the dual season, while the No. 8 men are now 1-2. The SDSU women, the defending Mountain West Conference champions, also beat Air Force by the final score of 149-130.
Top performers for UCSD were senior captain Nicholas Korth on the men’s side and sophomore Naomi Thomas for the women. Korth was a lone multiple-event winner for the men in sweeping his specialty breaststroke races. He first went 56.02 in the 100 before turning in a time of 2:03.39 to run away with the 200.
Thomas posted the top mark in her best event, the 200 butterfly, going 2:05.62 to edge SDSU’s Caroline Mitchell (2:05.80) to the wall. The Burlingame product later went 59.33 in the 100 to beat all of the Air Force competitors.
The UCSD men won four of 14 swimming events on the day. Aside from Korth, Cole Heale sprinted 21.40 to take the 50 free and fellow sophomore Paul Li went 4:10.74 to finish first in the 400 individual medley, just ahead of freshman teammate Zach Yong (4:11.45).
Anji Shakya was second-fastest (1:51.43) only to SDSU standout Anika Apostalon (1:49.35) in the 200 free, the event in which the senior Triton captain is the reigning Division II champion. Shakya also achieved the second-best time in the 500 free, swimming 5:01.70.
Among remaining event winners for the UCSD women was sophomore Colleen Daley, who beat Air Force in the 50 free, sprinting 24.21 after a trio of Aztecs. Freshman Catherine Woo produced her second individual win as a college swimmer, going 53.40 to top the field of Falcons, also following three SDSU entrants.
The Tritons also swept the relays from Air Force on the women’s side, timing 1:47.40 in the meet-opening 200 medley and 3:33.47 in the meet-closing 400 free. Shakya led Daley, junior Sierra Robbins and anchor Woo in the latter race. It was senior Sandy Hon, freshman Jaimie Bryan, Thomas and anchor Daley narrowly downing the Falcons’ best foursome (1:47.94) in the 200 medley relay.
The Tritons launch right into the 2014 calendar year and conclude a busy week with two final home meets for the season this coming weekend. UCSD will first welcome Boise State, Grand Canyon and San Diego State to the Canyonview Aquatic Center on Saturday, Jan. 4. The first swimming event is slated for a 12 p.m. start that day.