The BYU swimming and diving team put the new Richards Building pool to good use in the first meet of the season, and team captain Ellie Brinton said the team is building up to a good season.
Their first meet against Utah on Sept. 21 was a non-scoring and tough opening test for the Cougars and a measuring stick to indicate where they are at the season’s beginning.
The team lost 12 out of 15 relay races, but head coach John Brooks said the team performed better than expected.
“In some regards, we have some work to do and in others, we look better than we anticipated,” Brooks said. “For the most part, we are looking good and looking forward to the rest of the season.”
The Cougars did take first in the 3×50-yard back relay, the mixed 200-yard free relay and the mixed 200-yard relay.
BYU, which spent all of last season training in various pools around the state due to the renovations of the Richards Building pool, finished fourth in the 2017–18 Mountain Pacific Sports Federation (MPSF) conference rankings.
“Coming off of last year we’ve got the most resilient team that we’ve ever had,” BYU assistant coach Jordan Fletcher said. “Also one of the most talented recruiting classes that we’ve ever had. Those two things make us dangerous for anybody that we go against.”
Brinton said she hopes the team can learn from last season and make the necessary adjustments.
“We’re just rebuilding from a really hard year,” Brinton said. “Last year took us to the ground, and now we’re just building back up.”
Coach Brooks talked about the different athletes on the team and how they hope to work together to have a successful season.
“We’re pretty balanced on both our men’s and women’s teams,” Brooks said. “We have some quality incoming freshmen plus returned missionaries on the team. We also have a couple good quality swimmers who are from all over the world.”
BYU now prepares for the Intermountain Shootout at the Colorado Mesa University campus in Grand Junction, Colorado on Oct. 5 and 6. This will be the first meet of the 2018–19 season that counts towards regular season standings.