ASU swim hosts GCU, Wazzou in home opener

Sophomore Zac Dalby takes a breath in the butterfly during ASU’s meet against UA on Feb. 11. (Photo by Aaron Lavinsky)

The ASU swim team will take on GCU and Washington State on Saturday in a dual-meet at home in the Mona Plummer Aquatic Center.

Divers will not compete for the second straight meet but will continue to prepare for their first meet.

The Sun Devils look to rebound after a disappointing loss to NAU two weeks ago in Flagstaff.

“I think we’ve improved from a month ago, that’s kind of the goal this time of year,” swim coach Dorsey Tierney-Walker said. “You know, get better every week.”

The women are back in the water on Saturday and the men’s side gets its first look at competition, as it welcomes GCU and WSU.

Washington State comes into this competition with a win already under its belt against cross-state rival Seattle University.

The ‘Lopes are NCAA Division II but are solid on both sides. The men are ranked No. 1 nationally in their division, as the women are No. 3.

GCU senior Eetu Karvonen is a tough test for the Sun Devils. Karvonen won the D-II NCAA championship in the 100 and 200-meter breaststroke last year and is the preseason favorite to win the RMAC Men’s Swimmer of the Year award.

Without a doubt, the swimmers from GCU and Washington State present tough challenges for the Sun Devils, but Tierney-Walker said ASU is excited and ready.

“This is our first real competition as far as the full event list, and we are just anxious to see where we are at and look at it as a starting point,” Tierney-Walker said. “We need to execute what we’ve been practicing.”

Tierney-Walker believes this meet is a good benchmark to measure where the Sun Devils are. She also said that all of the regular season meets are just opportunities to prepare the swimmers for the Pac-12 and NCAA championships later on.

“Our sport is very heavily emphasized on the second semester, but any opportunity we get to race, we need to take advantage of it,” Tierney-Walker said.

 

Reach the reporter at ross.dunham@asu.edu