LARAMIE — University of Wyoming swimmer Katelyn Blattner has led the Cowgirls in the pool at the Mountain West Championships with two event titles.
The conference championships are split with the swimmers competing since Wednesday at UNLV’s Buchanan Natatorium in Las Vegas. The women divers have been competing since Thursday at Air Force Academy’s Cadet Natatorium in Colorado. Saturday’s final results from both meets were not available before press time.
Blattner, a senior, was at the top of the podium for the second time on Friday when she won the 200-yard freestyle finals 1 minute, 48.36 seconds to defend her title in the event from last season. On Thursday, she also defended her previous 500 free title when she set a season-best 4:47.33 for the Cowgirls’ first event win at the MW championships.
Blattner has won four event titles in two years, and is the first Cowgirl to win conference event titles back-to-back since Lesley Young, who accomplished it in the 100 backstroke in 2011 and 2012.
“Katelyn is making her case for being swimmer of the meet in repeating as the 200 freestyle champion,” UW head coach Dave Denniston said in a news release. “It can only be described as a gutsy race to the finish.
“… (The 500 free) was a nice, controlled race from beginning to end and she looks great in the water.”
As of Friday, the Cowgirls swimmers were in fourth place overall with 653 points after 14 events, well ahead of Colorado State’s 562. Leading the team rankings was San Diego State (926), UNLV (916) and Nevada (892).
On Friday, senior Hannah Mclean-Leonard posted a top time of 53.82 the 100 butterfly preliminaries, and was third in the finals at 54.21.
UW secured a third-place finish in the 800 free relay on Wednesday with Blattner, freshman Kali Franckowiak, junior Lainee Jones and junior Sani Carsrud touching the wall 7:18.61, dropping its season-best time by almost 7 seconds.
Multiple season-best times were recorded by the Cowgirls so far in the meet.
Sophomore diver Melissa Mirafuentes secured a couple of runner-up finishes so far.
Mirafuentes scored 319.10 points in the preliminaries from the 3-meter board on Friday and was second in the finals with a season-best 330.15. During Thursday’s 1-meter competition, she was second in the prelims with 292.10 and had a six-dive score of 282.95 to also finish second in the finals.
For complete results from the women’s swimming and diving MW championships, visit the website www.gowyo.com.